Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Mas Cueva Cucaracha

After the crabs we head downstream and find it continues into some passages.

We head down the waterfalls and follow the water.It gets lower in spots but isn't what I would call "confined."

Some spots do require some bending and contortions. Then we are in a crack of sorts and the water is getting higher.

We have reached the end of the road for the day - a sump. There are plastic water bottles and plant debris floating here that have been brought in by the river. Makes you rethink all those plastic bottles, huh? Even if you toss them in the garbage they end up somewhere - we see a lot of crap deep underground. (I'm done with the sermon now) So does the river continue? Probably. Did we go there? No. It was supposed to be a thunderstorm type day and flash floods filling small tunnels is a definite concern. The decision was to leave the face mask in the pack and return.

Out we came.Back out the crack, up the river (saw flagging marked a-26 and b1), a left into the tunnel and back to the stew.

It was nice to have cool, clean water. It wasn't a cold cave but the water section was actually pleasant.

Back we went up the little waterfalls.

We saw snails, crabs, cockroaches, bats.

Then in the G-1 tunnel Ron yells for us to shut off the lights. We do and are amazed to see to bio luminescent spots glowing. Ron and Bro and I have never seen bio luminescence in a cave before. I am a beginner, but Ron and Bro have been in MANY caves over many years and haven't seen this. Here is what we saw...

When we put the lights back on we located what to the best of my googling is a click beetle Chalcolepidius elateridae. I have to compare my photo with the internet ones closer and we need to ask a biologist but this is what it looks like in the light. There was only one so I am wondering if it is a cockroach that is showing mating behavior that we just haven't ever looked for or seen. Either way it was exciting to see, makes us wonder and marvel and think about and gives us something to look for in other caves. It could be that we just never noticed before - that's what happened when I photographed a sea spider with egg sacks in Puget Sound waters. I couldn't do a dive after that withOUT seeing one. Hopefully this is an unusual find...
So was this a disgusting cave? No. Would I go back? In a heartbeat. Is there more to explore? Yes. Was it uncomfortable? In the hot area. The plan of attack would be to mosey real quick to the big bat room and explore fast, get out, and go further into the maze. Next time Jeff will have to come and just bypass the hot part.


Jamesj said...

Very interesting post. In some of the pics, the sides of the cave look like butt cheeks. I think you might have gone into the butt cheeks of the Earth!

You have much greater tolerance for facing repulsive things in tight places than I ever will. I would not even consider going into such a cave.

ARBUZ said...

Cucubano in PR (Cocuyo in Mexico)
Plentiful in the 'forest' northeast from the cave
Here's one being preyed upon by a cave bat