Weekly Photo Challenge – Orange

Many sea creatures living on the coral reefs adopt a very effective camouflage strategy. Believe it or not, they utilize the colors in the warm range – bright oranges and reds to protect themselves from predators. How could orange be a camouflage color, you might ask? Well, ocean water absorbs light – the greater the depth the darker it gets in general, but the water also absorbs wavelengths of light in a specific way. Longer wavelengths are absorbed first and on the light spectrum, those wavelengths produce the colors of light. From longest to shortest in our visible light range we see red, orange, yellow, green, blue and finally purple. So at a depth of 15 feet, reds disappear, and our color for this week’s challenge, orange, disappears at 25 feet!

Our fishy friends have evolved to display brilliant colors that literally blend with their environment – the water! This strategy helps to protect them from larger predators including Mr. Shark! Here are just three wonderfully orange creatures from my underwater adventures. Oh, and by the way, most divers carry an underwater light with them (mine’s on my camera frame) so they can see these spectacular colors in the muted ocean waters even during daytime dives.


This slideshow requires JavaScript.

To learn more about the Weekly Photo Challenge, click here.

19 comments on “Weekly Photo Challenge – Orange

  1. Amy says:

    Wow, what an adventure, and be able to capture these beautiful underwater creatures! Thank you for the special post, Cathy!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Carrie Rubin says:

    Fascinating to think how nature evolves to protect itself. Insightful post. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. That was enlightening (pun intended) Sea Creature Whisperer.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. You continue to educate and enlighten us, Cathy. Your adventures are fantastic as are your photographs

    Liked by 1 person

  5. aFrankAngle says:

    Fascinating … besides the images, love the factoid that orange is depth sensitive.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Cathy Ulrich says:

      Thanks, Frank. Actually all the colors are depth sensitive. The longer the wavelength of light, the sooner that color is absorbed, but eventually, even purple is absorbed!


  6. Brigitte says:

    So beautiful and I had no idea that orange disappeared at 25 feet. Nature never ceases to amaze. My favorite is that little seahorse. You’ll have to capture the elusive mermaid at some point, C. ;).

    Liked by 1 person

  7. seabluelee says:

    Awesome photos and beautiful creatures, Cathy! I’ve learned something new today, as I often do from your posts.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Cathy Ulrich says:

      Thanks, Leon. I’m so glad you enjoyed the post. Color absorption is one of the many challenges of underwater photography. Strobes help, but it’s also necessary to get as close to the subject as possible – while paying attention to all the other things required to scuba dive safely! But it’s a really fun challenge nonetheless.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. ShimonZ says:

    Love your pictures, and love learning from you as well. Didn’t know the explanation for the colors till now. And it makes so much sense. This way they can differentiate among themselves up close, and also remain less visible from afar. Thanks, Cathy.

    Liked by 1 person

Feel free to leave a comment, you know you want to...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s