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March 10, 2007

Jewel top snail, Calliostoma annulatum
A jewel top snail (Calliostoma annulatum) cruising through a colony of
bryozoans.  If you look closely, you may notice the individual bryozoan polyps. 
This shot takes advantage of something that's usually a great source of
frustration for the underwater photographer.  Since light that's in-line with
the camera lens produces excessive backscatter, strobes are almost always
positioned off to one side.  However, this makes it difficult to illuminate the
interior of holes like the ones you see here.  In this case, most everything of
interest is near the lip of each hole and the unilluminated recesses contrast
nicely with the rest of the image.

    "Anchor Farm", Monterey Bay, California
    March 10, 2007

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