In North Sulawesi we are lucky to see so much life under the surface. We see so many species of reef fish, corals and pelagics that we sometimes forget how lucky we are. If you love spotting macro critters during a dive too then you have to come to Bunaken to see the orangutan crab.
The Orangutan crab is tiny and covered in “fur”, which make them hard subjects to photograph. They grow to about 2 cm long and have relatively long arms covered in a rusty coloured hair, they can also be referred to as the bubble coral crab and the hairy crab. They are named after the Orangutans which live in the Jungle in Sumatra and Kalimantan (Indonesian Borneo) which have a similar appearance. The orangutan crab lives on soft coral and their colour makes it easy to spot as they are usually on a light coloured bubble coral (and anemones). Sometimes they stick shells and sand to their hairs to try and camouflage a little bit more.
The Orangutan crab is in the family inachidae, which is the same family as the spider crab. They can be found throughout the Indo-Pacific region but are found mostly close to the equator. At Two Fish Divers Bunaken we find orangutan crabs at almost every dive site so if you ask our dive guides, they will find one for you. Hopefully you can get a great photo of this hairy little guy like Wilfried!
The bubble coral that the orangutan crab inhabits is equally as interesting. The bubble structures swell during the daylight hours of the day to optimise the coral’s intake of light and at night, the coral releases tentacles to capture food. Nighttime is generally when all crustaceans are also out hunting for food. Have you done a night dive before? With the PADI Advanced course or Night Diver specialty, you can night dive here with us and see some extraordinary things that you don’t see during the day.
Our PADI Divemaster Trainee, Sophie loved the night diving in Bunaken but sadly she has had to leave. After 4 weeks of training to become a PADI Divemaster she finally finished and joined the ranks as a diving professional. It was great having her here for the duration of the course, and Sophie, we are all sad to see you go. You promised to visit us again when you can, and we will hold you to it! If you want to see what Sophie thought of Two Fish Divers Bunaken, check out her Divemaster blogs on our website.
Our other guests have been enjoying day trips, night diving and everything in between! Fanny and Marianne buddied up to see the crazy crustaceans that come out at night, with dive guide Tian working hard to show them everything. John has been filming away on wide-angle and we look forward to the results. Elisa and Manuel brought their daughter, Rachel, to supervise from the surface while they explore underneath, luckily she loves snorkeling.
Together with Ming, our instructor intern, and Alex our newest DMT, we are looking forward to next week and can’t wait to see what the week will bring. Maybe it will be you, reading this, that will come to Bunaken to see the orangutan crab!
Would you like to join us for diving, PADI COurses or professional training at Two Fish Divers Bunaken? Fill in the contact form below and we will get right back to you!