Friday, September 4, 2009

Fish coral and sponges

Some scenery.  Fire coral down in front, then a Gorgonian, then fire coral again, in a different shape, with a wine colored Rope Sponge that's shaped like a blob instead of a rope.
A little Wrass, darting by in front of that misbehaving sponge.  Sponges have holes, yes.
A Bicolor Damselfish trying to stare me down, but I was brave and didn't run away, so the fish ran away.  There's another sponge growing in a shape that's not according to the name, but maybe the bumps will grow up into the rope shape.

.Lots of Wrasses zipping around.  That bluish thing is a sponge.  It's named (some sort of) Vase Sponge, but in shallow water, it takes a long flowing shape.

And another brownish Gorgonian down in front.  This one has white polyps lined up along of the sides of its' branches.

.Coral, coral and coral.  Mustard Hill coral, Brain coral, and Bladed Fire coral.  Oh, and a Bicolor Damselfish.

.Anothet threatening Bicolor Damsel fish that has three colors.  They are often arounf fire coral in the shallows for hiding places.  A very abundant fishie.

This Fire Coral is shaped like fingers, the white is the growing part.  Aptly named stuff, it will give you a burn that stings for several hours if you bump into it.  So just don't bump into it.

A Blue Head.  A Terminal Phase Blueheaded Wrass.  Lucky and smart to have lived long enough to change from a female to a male, once the dominant male is gone.  Odd behavior, that.  But not so uncommon.

The yellow wrasses in these photos are all smaller females, his "harem"

If there are all females from birth, there are lots more eggs, and a better chance for a decent population.

The males do have to work hard herding around their females and try to keep them from running off in a different herd.  As many as 30 to a herd.

And a big fish!  A Red Hind.  Poor guy, he's all disturbed by my Big Bubbling Monster presence, and I got this image just before he ran away.  But good, he's one that they shoot for dinner.

On his cheek is a thing called an Isopod.  Hitchhiking, and getting free food left over from what the fish eats.  They hang on with sharp claws and must be uncomfortable.  The fish might eventually scrape it off, and then it'll grab the next fish.

OK, a mild rainy day here in Paradise.  The car has happy feet, the flat tire is fixed, and the storm named Erika didn't grow into a bad beastie, just getting light rain at the moment.  A dive planned for tomorrow, and some more photos for you!

Thanks for stopping by!



  1. Stopping by to say Hi. :) LOVE that little wrass against the purple of that sponge! I so wish my son would get his reef aquarium back up. It was about the only chance those of us in the middle of the country get to see such beauty. Thank you for sharing Melissa!

  2. forgot to say, he didn't have fish. He was an expert at coral. He was able to raise very rare coral that the groups on the coast marvelled at. Some were even endangered. NOT a job for the average person...requires too much work and too much knowledge. But oh, they were so beautiful. OF course since he's moved back to the middle of the country, it's just too hard to have that kind of a tank. Constantly fighting heat and dry air. :( I might have a photo of the tank somewhere if you are interested. Right to me privately thought, ok? Thank you.