I'm in the Puget Sound off of Seattle diving with sixgill sharks (Hexanchus griseus). We just finished our first evening in the water, and had fantastic luck (we started at around 9pm). Matt Segal and I dropped in and had four female sixgills come in on the bait almost immediately. I felt tremendous privilege being in the water with them because they are such elusive animals; our habitats simply don't normally have any overlap.
a sixgill shark in Seattle (Hexanchus griseus)
During Simon's rotation, he saw a large sixgill (12 ft long, estimated) eating crabs. We're told that this behavior has never been seen before, and hope to be able to capture it on video tomorrow night.
I always thought ratfish (Chimaeras) were rare (I photographed some in Alaska, but there were literally hundreds down at the bottom today, along with about a billion dungeness crabs. If you want to photograph ratfish, there is no need to fly off to some exotic place and descend down into the depths. Fly to Seattle, chuck some bait off of the side of your boat, and shoot as many photos as you need!
On the way up from the dive, we ascended through an algae bloom. I looked over at Matt while we were hanging at our safety stop, and the slight oscillation of the ascent line caused his body to throw off literally thousands of sparkling lights...
six-gill shark -- count 'em. there are six of them. :)
Continue reading for video updates from the field. I'll be uploading video as time allows for the next three days.
**UPDATE**: I've put up the full trip report.