Diving from the Chertan Photo Gallery

The M. V. Chertan departed from Alotau and concentrated on diving Milne Bay and the D'Entrecasteaux Islands. At the time the small (60') Chertan was family-owned and operated and had six cabins.

Milne Bay is a large bay in the Milne Bay Province in Southeastern Papua New Guinea. It has a sheltered deep-water harbor. Milne Bay has some of the most biodiverse coral reefs in the world. Milne Bay Province occupies the eastern end of New Guinea, with its capital at Alotau.

The D'Entrecasteaux Islands lie off the eastern tip of New Guinea in the Solomon Sea in Milne Bay Province. The islands span 160 km (96 miles) with a total land area of 3100 square km (1197 square miles), separated from New Guinea by the 30 km (19 mile) wide Ward Hunt Strait in the north and the 18 km (11 mile) wide Goschen Strait in the south. There are three main islands, several smaller islands, and reefs. The islands are volcanically active.

Wide-angle scenes:


Milne Bay is known for muck diving, and that is what we spent most of this part of the trip doing.

Sea pens:

Virgularia sp.

Virgularia sp.


Bispira sp.

Christmas tree worms, Spirobranchus sp.

Sabellastarte indica

Bispira sp.


Pseudobicreos bedfordi

Acanthozoon alderi

Head-shield slugs:

Brilliant headshield slug, Chelidonura electra


Roboastra gracilis

magnificent chromodoris, Chromodoris magnificata

Chromodoris quadricolor

Anna's chromodoris, Chromodoris annae

white mantle glossodoris, Glossodoris pallida

Bullock's hypselodoris, Hypselodoris bulllockii

Goniobranchus kuniei

Humpy Mexichromis, Mexichromis multituberculata

Flabellina sp.

blue dragon, Pteraeolidia ianthina

orange-spotted Janolus, Janolus sp.

Papuan Plakobranchus, Plakobranchus ocellatus

freckled sea hare, Aplysia nigrocincta

ornate sapsucking slug, Elysia ornata

yellow-tipped phyllodesmium, Phyllodesmium briareus

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Miamira sinuata

unadorned gymnodoris, Gymnodoris inornata

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Goniobranchus reticulatus

Glossodoris hikuerensis

Tula phyllidia, Phyllidia tula

Sky blue phyllidia, Phyllidia coelestis

Fissured phyllidiopsis, Phyllidiopsis fissurata

pimpled phyllidiella, Phyllidiella pustulosa

banana nudibranch, Aegires minor



fluted giant clam, Tridacna squamosa

giant clam, Tridacna gigas

variable thorny oyster, Spondylus varians

scaly thorny oyster, Spondylus squamosus

cock's comb oyster, Lopha cristagalli


Nassarius sp.

orange-spotted mitre, Mitra mitra

clear sundial, Architectonica perspectiva

spindle cowries, Phenacovola sp.

Conus marmoreus

tiger cowrie, Cypraea tigris

red-lined bubble shell, Bullina lineata

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Terebra affinis

orange moon snail, Polinices aurantius

Venus comb murex, Murex pecten



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white-banded cleaner shrimp, Lysmata amboinensis

banded coral shrimp, Stenopus hispidus

blue boxer shrimp, Stenopus tenuirostris

Metapenaeopis sp.

Metapenaeopsis sp.

marbled shrimp, Saron sp.

harlequin shrimp, Hymenocera elegans

peacock-tail anemone shimp, Periclimenes brevicarpalis

magnificent anemone shrimp, Ancylomenes magnificus

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Periclimenes tenuipes

squat shrimp, Thor amboinensis

commensal crinoid shrimp, Periclemenes oommensalis

sea star shrimp, Periclimenes soror

emperor shrimp, Periclimenes imperator


painted spiny lobster, Panulinus versicolor

Squat lobsters:

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Galathea sp.

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sea cucumber swimming crab, Lissocarcinus orbicularis

scissor swimming crab, Lupocyclus sp.

red swimming crab, Charybdis paucidentata

turtle weed swimming crab, Caphyra rotundifrons

Porcelain crabs:

spotted porcelain crab, Neopetrolisthes maculatus

Decorator crabs:

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Hermit crabs:

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beautiul hermit crab, Calcinus pulcher

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white-spotted hermit crab, Dardanus megistos

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hairy hermit crab, Pagurus hirtimanus

anemone hermit crab, Dardanus pedunculatus

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Mantis shrimps:

Lisa's mantis, Lysiosquillina lisa

peacock mantis, Odontodactylus scyllarus

golden mantis, Lysiosquilloides mapia


Rhopalaea sp.

Rhopaleae sp.

Atriolum robustum

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Clavelina cf. flava

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gold-mouth sea squirt, Polycarpa aurata

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Cassiopea andromeda


Sea cucumbers:

Euapta sp.

Lampert's sea cucumber, Synaptula lamperti

blackspotted sea cucumber, Bohadschia graeffei

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Sea stars:

Heffernan's sea star, Celerina heffermani

Luzon sea star, Echinaster luzonicus

blue sea star, Linckia laevigata

warty sea star, Echinaster callosus

multipore sea star, Linckia multifora

Brittle stars:

brown-banded brittle star, Ophiarachnella swptemspinosa

speckled brittle star, Ophiochasma stellata

variable brittle star, Ophiomastix variablilis

deceptive brittle star, Ophiothrix deceptor


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Sea Urchins:

Astropyga radiata

Banded sea urchin (juvenile left, adult right), Echinothrix calamaris

Diadema sp.

Savigny's Sea Urchin, Diadema savignyi

Magnificent fire urchin, Asthenosoma ijimai



Berry's bobtail squid, Euprymna berryi

pygmy squid, Idiosepius sp.


broadclub cuttlefish, Sepia latimanus


day octopus, Octopus cyanea

Tube anemones (cerianthids):



painted frogfish, Antennarius pictus

Gobies, blennies, and shrimp gobies:

striped triplefin, Helcogramma striatum

skinspot dwarfgoby, Trimma halonevum

Steinetz' shrimpgoby, Amblyeleotris steinmitzi

eyebrow shrimpgoby, Amblyeleotris sp.

spotted shrimpgoby, Amblyeleotris guttata

signal goby, Signigobius biocellatus

neophyte goby, Coryphopterus neophytus

large whip goby, Bryaninops amplus

orange-dashed goby, Valenciennea puellaris

fire dartfish, Nemateleotris magnifica

bluestriped fnagblenny, Plagiotremus rhinorhynchos

blue-spotted sand-diver, Trichonotus setigerus

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white-lined blenny, Ecsenius taeniatus

false cleanerfish, Aspidontus taeniatus

triplespot blenny, Crossosalarias macrospilus

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stonycoral ghostgoby, Pleurosicya micheli


black-saddled toby, Canthigaster valentini

whitebelly toby, Canthigaster bennetti

striped puffer, Arothron manilensis

map puffer, Arothron mappa

blackspotted puffer, Arothron nigropunctatus

star ouffer (juvenile), Arothron stellatus


ringed pipefish, Doryrhamphus dactyliophorus

Schultz's pipefish, Corythoichthys schultzi

yellowspotted pipefish, Corythoichthys polynotatus

ornate ghost pipefish, Solenostomus paradoxus


common seahorse (yellow: female variant), Hippocampus taeniopterus

estuary seahorse (yellow: female variant), Hippocampus kuda


ribbon eel, Rhinomuraena quaesita

fimbriated moray, Gymnothorax fimbriatus

white-eyed moray, Siderea thysoidea

yellow-headed moray, Gymnothorax rueppelliae

Napolean snake eel, Ophichthus bonaparti

Butterflyfish and angelfish:

vagabond butterflyfish, Chaetodon vagabundus

redfin butterflyfish, Chaetodon lunulatus

spot-banded butterflyfish, Chaetodon punctatofasciatus

latticed butterflyfish, Chaetodon rafflesi

humphead bannerfish, Heniochus varius

blue-girdled angelfish, Pomacanthus navarchus

Moorish idol:

Zanclus comutus


doublebar goatfish, Parupeneus bifasciatus

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freckled goatfish, Upeneus tragula

red goatfish, Mulloidichthys pflugeri

Triggerfish and tangs:

Pacific sailfin tang, Zebrasoma veliferum

strapweed filefish, Pseudomonacanthus macrurus

clown triggerfsih, Balistoides conspicillum

redtooth triggerfish, Odonus niger

Anemonefish and clownfish:

Tomato anemonefish, Amphiprion frenatus

spinecheek anemonefish, Premnas biaculeatus

orange-finned anemonefish, Amphiprion chrysopterus

clown anemonefish, Amphiprion percula

false clown anemonefish, Amphiprion ocellaris

pink anemonefish, Amphiprion penderaion

saddleback anemonefish, Amphiprion polymnus

Clark's anemonefish, Amphiprion clarkii

Damselfish and anthias:

golden damsel, Amblyglyphidodon aureus

green damsel, Amblyglyphidodon indicus

staghorn damsel, Amblyglyphidodon curacao

three-spot dascyllus, Dascyllus trimaculatus

humbug dascyllus, Dascyllus aruanus

squares[ot anthias, Pseudanthias pleurotaenia

sunset anthias, Pseudanthias parvirostris

magenta slender anthias, Luzonichthys waitei

threadfin anthias, Pseudoanthias huchti


common lionfish, Pterois volitans

spotfin lionfish, Pterois antennata

shortfin lionfish, Dendrochirus brachypterus

Scorpionfish and stonefish:

flasher scorpionfish, Scorpaenopsis macrochir

devil scorpionfish, Scorpaenopsis diabolus

spiny devilfish, Inimicus didactylus

raggy scorpionfish, Scorpaenopsis venosa


roundbelly cowfish, Lactoria diaphana

longhorn cowfish, Lactoria comuta


longfin spadefish (juveniles), Platax teira

Barracudas and jacks:

blackfin barracuda, Sphyraena qenie

pickhandle barracuda, Sphyraena jello

silver trevally, Pseudocaranx dentex

great trevally, Caranx ignobilis

Groupers and coneys:

coral grouper, Cephalopholis miniata

bluespotted grouper, Cephalopholis cyanostigma

slender grouper, Anyperodon leucogrammicus

whitespotted grouper, Epinephelus caeruleopunctatus


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bluestreak cleaner wrasse, Labroides dimidiatus

oriental wrasse, Oxcheilinus rhodochrous

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rockmover wrasse (juvenile), Novaculichthys taeniourus

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yellowtail coris (Gaimard's wrasse) (juvenile), Coris gaimard


bullethead parrotfish (initial phase), Chlorurus sordidus


harlequin sweetlips (juvenile), Plectorhinchus chaetodonoides

oriental sweetlips, Plectorhinchus vittatus

dotted sweetlips, Plectorhinchus picus


Peacock flounder, Bothus mancus


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yellowlined cardinalfish, Apogon chrysotaenia

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spurcheek cardinalfish, Apogon fraenatus

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striped catfish, Plotosus lineatus


reef lizardfish, Synodus variegatus

twospot lizardfish, Synodus binotatus


red-spotted sandperch, Parapercis schauinslandi


spotted flathead, Cociella punctata


Razorfish, Aeolicus strigatus


longnose hawkfish, Oxycirrhites typus

pixy hawkfish, Cirrhitichthys oxycephalus

dwarf hawkfish, Cirrhitichthys falco


splendid soldierfish, Myripristis botche

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Last modified 27 February 2024