The Golden Mantis shrimp was previously known only inhabit the waters of the West Pacific, but I was lucky enough to spot one at the Blue Heron Bridge in Riviera Beach, Florida. I was diving on the west side of the bridge, sighting the mantis up on the sandbar towards the snorkel trail. Being so young and not knowing the significance of what I had spotted, I only snapped off a few photos before moving on. Post dive, Suzan Meldonian (my mentor at the time) and I were going over the photos from the dive and she notices the Golden Mantis shrimp amongst my photos. She said she had never seen one there before, and coming from someone who has hundreds of dives there this was significant. I sent the photos to the Florida Museum of Natural History to see if this is indeed a new species in the area.

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