By: Allister Lee
The Scorpionfish; as the name suggests, has venomous spines on its fins. A sting can be fatal and this species can have up to 40 spines; all coated with venom. The scorpionfish is a master of camouflage and a cunning ambusher. Due to their sedentary lifestyle it is not uncommon to have algae or other pests to grow on their body. It eats almost any fish including its own kind. The scorpionfish can adapt and live in stressful and polluted environment and it can tolerate hunger better than most species of fish. The scorpionfish is widespread in the tropics because it does not have a natural predator. So to summarize it all; this fish is Bad Ass. And it should be named Ninja fish instead because it has all the Ninja skills we would dream of having. This is a Ninja fish. lol
By: Allister Lee
Roach Reefs Resort is a a comfortable resort situated on a private, man-made tropical reef about 25 minutes by speed boat from Balung River, Tawau. The resort isn't luxurious but it provides basic and simple but comfortable and clean accommodation and home-cook local food. The food is great here!
Its location, right at the edge of the Borneo shelf boast of an abundance of coral and diverse marine life makes it a paradise for divers and snorkelers alike. Roach Reefs Resort offers diving and snorkeling trips to Roach Reefs, Sipadan, Mabul and Kapalai. Roach Reefs Resort is located just 45 minutes away from the world renown Sipadan Island.
Although the dive sites here are not as dynamic and as vibrant as the dive sites at Sipadan, Roach Reefs does have its own attraction. Roach Reefs provides fantastic muck and macro dives with an array of critters and macro subjects to be discovered from elusive crabs and shrimps to camouflaging nudibranchs and shy gobys and other small fishes that avid divers may find them rare elsewhere. Popular critter subject for marine photographers include: The Orang-utan crab, Munida squat-lobster, Bubble-coral shrimp, Cleaner shrimps, Gobys, Gold-spec jawfish, Ghost pipefish, Blennys, Leaf scorpionfish, Lionfish, Crocodilefish and a variety of Nembrotha and Chomodoris nudibranch.
Roach Reefs' greatest attraction is the Table corals, Staghorn corals and Carpet corals found in the Second Reef. This dive site has one of the healthiest and largest corals in the region. The growth and health of the corals here is as good if not better than the corals in Sipadan Island. In addition to that, the corals are located at very shallow depths (around 1 to 5 meters) and this make the corals easily accessible to snorkelers as well.
To sum it all, Roach Reefs is definitely a magnificent place that scuba divers and snorkelers should visit. It is one of the most underrated dive sites in our region and it certainly deserves more attention and recognition in the diving world. And to top it up, Roach Reefs Resort has 6 daily permits to Sipadan Island to provide you a diverse and complete dive and snorkeling adventure to the best spots in the Celebes Sea.
Pictures & review by: Roach Reefs Resort, Shim Yeeven & Allister Lee
For more than twenty years now, Sipadan has been the primary destination for avid divers and snorkelers to spend their vacations in Sabah. After each dive, divers come up with gaping eyes and a big wide smile and they start talking about how epic the dive was. We've heard how divers glorified Sipadan on a daily basis, squealing in delight at the mention of turtles, sharks, jacks and barracudas.
Sipadan is also one of the leading destinations for underwater photographers of various level of experience to visit. From palm-sized compact cameras to oversized DSLRs, a great deal of pictures taken are wide-angle shots, with bigger marine life and schooling fish as popular subject for photography. Little do we know, or care about the unique, bizarre and colorful critters that dwell in small holes and crevices, hiding amongst corals, sponges and anemones, waiting to be discovered. Although Mabul Island and Kapalai Island are dubbed as macro-havens and have one of the best muck-diving in the world, Sipadan shares with us, its own unique macro subjects to mesmerize us. Sipadan is an underrated macro-haven despite the abundance of small marine life. We can assure you that a critter-hunt at Sipadan is worth every minute!
Below are some pictures of macro subjects and critters you can surely see if you would pay a little bit of time and more attention to your surroundings. We hope that this blog post helps to generate some of your interest in these small marine organisms. Maybe one day soon you will be telling people how awesome the Frogfish, Leafish and Gobys are :)
We are a group of local professional divers & travel advisers based at Sipadan & we are dedicated to giving you the latest Sipadan news and updates. Get all you need to know about Sipadan from us!