When I first started writing this blog, I talked about having my first photographs published in an upcoming book by Rudie Kuiter, Nudibranchs of the World. Rudie is quite a renowned underwater photographer and author, having done several books with another of my favorite photographers and authors, Helmut Debelius. He was interested primarily because of my pictures of the Halgerda malesso (above) and of Halgerda guahan. There aren't that many pictures of these two species out there, but I happen to have hundreds that I've taken. Just being in the right place at the right time I guess, and then filling up the memory in my camera with different shots.
Then I was contacted by Erwin Kodiat who asked me if he could place some of my pictures on his online nudibranch site Nudi Pixel. I was again quite honored that he thought my pictures were of the quality that he wanted to have included on his website. After getting my pictures, he decided to go ahead and set up my very own page on his website, and he even did a photographer profile page for me as well.
One of the most recognized names in nudibranchs is Bill Rudman, who hosts the Sea Slug Forum. He is considered one of the leading experts in this field, and if he identifies your nudibranch, it is considered being expertly identified. He has identified several of mine for me including this latest one, Dendrodoris sp.
The fact that he is not sure if this particular species has been identified yet is a very cool thing. It means it's possible that I have submitted the first picture of this species. Whenever a name has the sp. behind it it means that it hasn't been individually named yet. So could this one eventually be called the Dendrodoris Blalockii? You just never know. Which is why you always take pictures of everything you see, whether you recognize it or not. One thing he pointed out to me was that those little star like designs on the back of the nudibranch are actually branching papillae.
Then just this past weekend I was contacted by Neville Coleman, another very famous underwater photographer, writer and adventurer. He had been told by Rudie Kuiter and Erwin Kodiat to contact me about my pictures of Halgerda malesso and Halgerda guahan (pictured above). He is also writing a book called Nudibranchs Encyclopedia, which features over 3,000 pictures and will cover the entire Asia/Indo-Pacific region. He will be using a few of my pictures in his book as well, giving me credit for the picture and listing Saipan, Northern Mariana Islands as the place the picture came from.
Of course it's a great honor to have people of this caliber interested in your pictures and wanting to use them in your books, but it's also very cool because they send you free copies of the book for your library. Hopefully that means there won't be as many pictures on my Smugmug site that don't have proper identifications in the future. Many thanks to these fine gentlemen for their interest in my pictures and for including me in their books and websites!