Finding Rhinopias in Anilao

Scuba Diving, Underwater Photography, Diving, Philippines, Underwater Travel
Finding Rhinopias is quite tricky, seasonal and seeing one takes you deep

Finding Rhinopias can be tricky. First, like any marine wildlife, they never stay in one location for long. Second, they are hard to spot since they take the color of their habitat. Third, they burrow like any scorpionfish when they had their fill...appeased their appetite
Scuba Diving, Underwater Photography, Philippines, Anilao, Diving, Anilao
Rhinopias Eschmeyeri or Paddleflap scorpionfish have a smooth body texture versus the Weedy Scorpionfish, Rhinopias Frondosa. Photo by Josh Vergara

They're vibrant and beautiful marine wildlife and you will have a higher chance finding one by hiring a local photogrpher dive guide. Rhinopias are mostly seen during the colder months December to March but there are times of the year when they could also be seen around June-July..specifically in the Aphols and Coconut Dive Sites

Scuba Diving, Underwater Photography, Philippines, Jun Lao, Diving
Salbe Garsano of Pier Uno Anilao has been one of the dive masters who can point you towards your first Rhinopias
Rhinopias in Anilao have been seen most in the following dive sites residing from 22 meters to as deep as 40 meters... been following the Rhinopias sightings scene since 2011 when I first saw three in one dive...

> Apols Dive Site- Sandy rocky slope, from 22M to 30M
> Coconut Dive Site- Sandy Slope with Black coral and various soft coral 22M-36M
> Red Rock- Topography- Sandy rocky slope, from 22M to 36M
> Secret Garden Balanoy Site- Topography, Sandy area with purple soft coral 18M to 40M
> Sunview House reef- Topography- Sandy area with purple soft coral 19M to 40m
> Unamed site between Maricaban and Daryl Laut Wreck- Topography Rocks...23M

Scuba Diving, Underwater Photography, Philippines, Diving, Jun Lao
Customary selfie with Marine Wildlife :)
What's common among the sites is they are mostly found in sandy rocky slopes with colorful soft coral, marine wildlife usually takes their color from their chosen habitat. 

Hope this helps if you are interested to see one...Hire a local photo guide, it's just P800- P1,000 pesos per dive, get a seasoned veteran and someone passionate about wildlife and photography and find out why long time divers has monikered this fish a "Holy Grail" critter.

Underwater Photography
shot in 2011 with trip guru Albert Kang in front of Sunview. Reference to what a Rhinopias Frondosa/ Weedy scorpionfish looks like versus a Paddleflap Scorpionfish

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