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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 1:32 pm    Post subject: Aquarium Reply with quote

Sea Life
The marine or salt water environment is one of the most diverse and colorful environments on the planet. As you enter the marine aquarium of Rhydin, you will meet an enormous range of creatures, some so very small that they are easily missed, and others so large they defy imagination.

Sea water is not a consistent salinity. It varies from place to place and season to season. Even the depth influences the make up of sea water. The general range of sea water for the aquarium is a density of 1.025 -1.028. The pH is also maintained around 8.0 pH.

Welcome to the RhyDin Aquarium.

Squirrelfishes (Family Holocentridae)

Squirrel fish are easily recognized as most are similarly shaped with a deeply notched dorsal fin, forked tail, large eyes and a very strong second spine of the anal fin. In some genera, Neonphon, Sargocentron, and Holocentrus, there is also a strong, sharp spine present on the cheek bone. Squirrelfishes are basically red in color, usually trimmed with a pattern of black, white or yellow.

They have large eyes, and the red coloration, both of which are adaptations to a nocturnal existence. They are very shy during daylight, and prefer to come out in the evenings to eat. Squirrelfishes are carnivorous and will eat any fish smaller than themselves.

The Holocentridae family is further divided into two subfamilies: Holocentrinae (squirrel fishes) and Myripristinae (soldierfishes). Until recently, the subfamily of squirrel fishes was thought to contain only one genus, Holocentrus. But, two new species having significant anatomical differences were found in the Atlantic. Thus, they were given separate genera, Flammeo and Adioryx. These three genera contain a total of 32 species of squirrel fish.

Compatibility: Squirrelfish, tangs and surgeons, live corals, live rock, sand.

Sargocentron
Crown Squirrelfish
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 1:59 pm    Post subject: Filefishes - Monacanthidae Reply with quote

Filefishes (Family Monacanthidae)

The filefishes are similar to triggerfishes but lack the ?trigger? mechanism of that family. They have instead a single, long, sharp dorsal spine, sometimes armed with small, downwardly directed spinules. The gill openings are restricted and the pelvic fins are absent. The common name ?filefish? comes from the use of the skin as an abrasive. The scales are modified, giving the skin a shagreen-like texture similar to that of sharks.

Filefish can be found among coral reefs and rocky outcroppings in temperate waters around the world. They dine on a wide range of foods including algae, sponges, tunicates, coral polyps, crustaceans and other invertebrates. In general, most types of Filefish will only grow to a length of 6 inches or so but some giants in the family can grow to over 3 feet long!

Filefishes are inoffensive little fishes, some species which are easy to keep, others are difficult. They are omnivorous and should feed on a mixture of animal and vegetable foods.

Hawaiian filefish (Species: Pervagor spilosoma)
Photo credit: John Hoover

Redtailed filefish (Species: Pervagor melanocephalus)


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 2:38 pm    Post subject: Trunkfishes - Ostraciidae Reply with quote

Trunkfishes ? family Ostraciidae

The scales of trunkfishes are fused together to form a solid shell which covers almost the entire body. This shell is provided with openings for the various fins, the eyes, gill openings, and snout. In some species there are sharp spines projecting from the corners providing a rather unpleasant mouthful for any fish. The small fins and bulky body make rapid swimming an impossibility. Trunkfishes can easily be run down.

They are found in shallow water, often over grass floats. They feed on various small crabs and shrimps by ?blowing? into the sand and scaring up the prey like a hydraulic miner.








Scrawled Cow Fish


Humpback Turretfish
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 2:56 pm    Post subject: Porcupinefishes ? Diodontidae Reply with quote

Porcupinefishes ? Diodontidae

Porcupinefishes are well deserving of their name, having spines protruding from all over the body. This, combined with the ability to inflate themselves, creates a living pincushion, enough protection to ward off all but the hungriest of enemies. They are eaten, however, as they have been found in the stomachs of tunas.

The porcupinefishes grow quite large. Their natural diet includes hard-shelled crustaceans so shrimp or crab is a favorite food.


Black Saddle Puffer

Crowned Puffer

Porcupine Puffer


Sharpnose Puffer

Yellow Belly Puffer
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 3:16 pm    Post subject: Frogfishes ? Antennariidae Reply with quote

Frogfishes ? Antennariidae

The frogfishes are one of the oddest groups. They walk, crawl, go fishing with a rod and bait, and look like nondescript lumps!

Although they can swim, with the caudal fin providing the main propulsion, they normally remain close to the substrate, whether it be the bottom itself, or a floating raft of Sargassum. The pectoral and pelvic fins are modified as ?stalks? with the fins at the end, which are used almost like hands and feet as they crawl from one branch of the weed to another, or walk along the bottom. They are masters of disguise, looking for the most part like a rock or a piece of weed. When danger threatens, they will sit quietly, relying on this protective resemblance rather than flight.

Frogfishes are notorious for their large mouths and equally large capacity for food. Fishes almost as large as themselves have disappeared down the throat into the distensible stomach. To capture their food they remain quietly waiting for their prey confident that in their camouflage they will not be spotted. To entice the prey within striking range, one of the dorsal spines has been modified into a ?fishing pole? with a bait or lure at the end. The bait is wiggled as a fish approaches. If the fish is attracted to the bait and comes close, a swift movement by the frogfish is made and the fish is no longer there.


Black Angler


Colored Angler


Red Angler


Sargassum Angler


Warty Angler
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 3:47 pm    Post subject: The Moorish Idol ? Zanclidae Reply with quote

The Moorish Idol ? Zanclidae

The Moorish Idol is a favorite everywhere it has been found. Its distinctive color pattern and pleasingly artistic shaped body have prompted its use as a design in many aspects of life, surpassed only by the sea horse.

The Moorish Idol has a projecting snout, deep, compressed body, and elongate dorsal and anal fins. The dorsal fin has a filament that, when intact, is longer than the body itself.

This fish spends its larval life in the open ocean waters, returning to shore when about two to three inches in length. It usually thrives on live, cleaned mussels on the half shell.

It is closely related to the Surgeonfishes.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 4:07 pm    Post subject: The Butterfly Fishes ? Chaetodontidae Reply with quote

The Butterfly Fishes ? Chaetodontidae

The butterflyfishes lack the large spine on the preopercle or cheek bone that is present on angelfishes. They are compressed, deep bodied and have very pleasing color patterns. Some have long snouts, others have elongate fin rays or filaments trailing from the fins. The family is a very large one, containing over 100 species.

Butterflyfishes are strictly marine, although reports of adaptations to the brackish or even fresh water have been reported. Most butterflyfishes can be found on the coral reefs of the world?s oceans. The corals not only provide shelter, but food as well. The small mouths and brush-like teeth are adapted for nipping at the coral polyps as well as the small creatures that live in and around the corals themselves.

Spawning has never been observed. It is known that for the first few months, the young butterflyfishes live in the open ocean.


4 Eyed Butterfly

Atlantic Longnose Butterfly

Collare Butterfly

Copperband Butterfly

Double Saddle Butterfly

Gold 8 Band Butterfly

Golden Butterfly

Ornate Butterfly

Pearlscale Butterfly

Peppered Butterfly

Singular Bannerfish

Spotbanded Butterfly

Tahiti Butterfly

Threadfin Butterfly
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 4:29 pm    Post subject: Angelfishes ? Pomacanthidae Reply with quote

Angelfishes ? Pomacanthidae

Angelfishes are among the most beautiful of marine fishes in the world. Not only are the colors vivid, and the patterns aesthetically pleasing, but they are graceful in form and motion.

Some of the species grow to be very large, with long flowing fins, others are small and quick, acting something like damsels.

Many of the juveniles bear no resemblance whatever to the adults in color pattern, giving ichthyologists a puzzle when trying to discover which juvenile belongs to which adult. Each stage usually has a different scientific name causing a great deal of confusion. To add to the confusion, several species have crossed and produced hybrids, which of course were named.

Angelfishes all have a strong spine at the angle of the cheek bone which may be used in fighting. It is well known that they are scrappy fishes, particularly with members of their own species. Individuals seem to get along better with each other when there is a fairly good size difference between them.

The natural food includes odd items as sponges, coral, algae, and sea anemones, as well as the usual crustaceans and worms. There have been more than 60 species of angelfish discovered.


6 Bar Angel


Black Velvet Angel


Blue Ring Angel


Blue Face Angel


Cortez Angel


Emperor Angel


French Angel


Gold Tail Angel


Gray Angel


Koran Angel


Lyre Tail Angel


Majestic Angel


Queen Angel


Regal Angel
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 4:50 pm    Post subject: Triggerfishes ? Balistidae Reply with quote

Triggerfishes ? Balistidae

The first dorsal fin of the triggerfishes is reduced to two or three spines connected with a small membrane. The spines are so constructed and arranged that they form a locking mechanism where the first and longest spine cannot be depressed without ?releasing? it by moving the third spine first. This long spine is used to hold the fish in place when it jams itself into a hole when escaping danger or coming to rest at night. In addition this spine erected makes the triggerfish a very difficult fish to swallow.

Aside from the general shape of the body being unusual, the head in relation to the body is large. The eyes are set high in the head, the gill openings are restricted to a small slit, and the pelvic fins are absent. As in the case of the filefishes, the scales are modified giving the body a rough texture.

Triggerfishes are often colorful and hardy, making them good aquarium fishes. They tend to be quite aggressive and quickly dominate the waters they inhabit. They will eat just about anything.


Blue Jaw Trigger


Bridled Trigger


Clown Trigger


Golden Heart Trigger


Huma Huma Trigger


Niger Trigger


Piccaso Trigger


Rectangle Trigger


Starry Trigger


Undulated Trigger
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 5:15 pm    Post subject: Wrasses ? Labridae Reply with quote

Wrasses ? Labridae

The wrasses are a large group of fishes primarily occurring in tropical waters. They are moderate to large sized with a variety of body forms and special adaptations. Most wrasses are elongate with a slightly flattened body and long, continuous dorsal and anal fins. They have small mouths with separate, non-coalesced teeth.

The wrasse family has members which are among the most brilliantly colored of fishes. They often undergo changes when growing from juvenile to adult so that a single species may be brightly colored as a juvenile and change into a magnificently colored adult.

Spawning is accomplished in two ways, group spawning and individual spawning.

These fishes have the habit of nibbling constantly at bits of coral and always looking for food in the form of small crustaceans or worms.

Many species of wrasses have a habit of diving into the sand and disappearing for hours on end. This does not hurt them at all. Many wrasses have escaped capture by suddenly disappearing from view into a sandy patch. Other wrasses often assume odd positions in repose, sometimes partially burying themselves in the sand, or lying on their sides. Similar to some parrotfishes, there are wrasses that manufacture a mucus cocoon within which they spend the night.


Adorned Wrasse


Blue Sided Fairy Wrasse


Brown Bird Wrasse (female)


Green Bird Wrasse (male)


Checkerboard Wrasse


Gold Bar Wrasse


Ornate Wrasse


Sunset Wrasse


Yellowtail Coris Wrasse
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 4:06 pm    Post subject: The Parrotfishes - Scaridae Reply with quote

Parrotfishes are a large and colorful family of fishes, some of which grow to over four feet in length. In some areas of the world they are sold in fish markets, in others they are discarded as 'trash' fish.

Parrotfishes get their common name from the fact that their teeth are fused into a structure resembling a parrot's beak. This strong beak is used to miunch on corals, clams, crabs and other crustaceans or molluscs. The well developed pharyngeal teeth aid in the crushing of this material. They can bite the hand that feeds them, so care should be exercised when attempting to handle these fish.

Parrotfishes resemble the wrasses and at times it is difficult to tell them apart. The habit of sleeping inside a cocoon of mucus is common methods are likewise similar and there is no doubt that these two families are closely related.

Parrotfishes normally have two color patterns per species, a supermale being present.


Spectacled Parrotfish


Bicolor Parrotfish


Cetoscarus bicolor
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 4:19 pm    Post subject: The Sharp Nosed Puffers - Canthigasteridae Reply with quote

The Sharp-nosed Puffers are closely related to the family Tetraodontidae and they have the same ability to inflate themselves. The snouts are pointed, thus the common name of sharp-nosed puffers. Some ichthyologists do not place them in a separate faimly but combine them with the Tetraodontids.

Sharp-nosed puffers are native to the tropical waters of the world's oceans. They usually are found grubbing around on sandy or grass bottoms rather than around coral or rock. Their principal food consists of crustaceans and molluscs so feed them things like chopped shrimp, crab meat, clams, oysters or even chopped fish.

Their oxygen requirements are very high, so they live in well aerated sections of ocean.


Canthigaster valentini




Canthigaster cinctus
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 5:12 pm    Post subject: Damselfishes - Pomacentridae Reply with quote

Pomacentrids are among the most popular fishes. They are reasonably small, colorful, lively, hardy and plentiful. However, they are rather aggressive. They choose a territory and defend it with vigor against anything or anyone that appears to threaten it.

Damselfishes are found in almost all tropical waters of the world. They are common in shallow water around the coral and rocks. In some instances, (Dascyllus, Amphiprion) they become closely associated with corals and sea anemones, even to the extent of forming a commensal relationship with them.

Pomacentrids are among the first marine fishes to be spawned and raised in captivity. They are nest builders and guarders, a behavioral trait similar to the fresh water ciclids. The male damselfish will prepare the nest site by cleaning a rock surface, making sure it is ready for the deposit of the eggs. He will change color at this time and do a looping action signaling a nearby female that all is ready. If the female is also ready to spawn, she will accept the invitation and deposit her eggs on the selected spot. The female is then driven off and the male stands guard until hatching.

The natural food of the damselfishes varies with the species. Some species are herbivores, others are carnivores. Most of the damselfishes are omnivores.


4 Stripe Damsel


Azure Damsel


Damsel Beau Gregory


Blue Fin Damsel


Blue Velvet Damsel


Domino Damsel


Garibaldi Damsel


Jewel Damsel


Orange Tail Damsel


Snowball Damsel


Solomon Blue Devel


Springers Damsel
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 6:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Anemone fishes are specialized pomacentrids that have entered a commensal relationship with sea anemones. They are very colorful.

They are not usually particular in an aquarium as to which species of anemone they will inhabit. It seems that if their own species is not at hand, the clownfish will live among the tentacles of oether species that are placed with it. There are many records of sea anemones from the Florida coast asting as hosts to several species of amphiprion. In nature, they are more apt to be living in a specific type of anemone.

The anemone and fish have become adapted to each other through physiological and behavioral means. They maintain a delicate relationship with each other that at times can be broken, the anemonefish becoming just another morsel of food.

Clownfishes are small and hardy. They are found in tropical areas of the Pacific and Indian Oceans. But they are completely absent from the Atlantic Ocean.


Black Ocellaris Clown


Blue Stripe Clarkii


Cinnamon Clown


Gold Stripe Maroon Clown


Maroon Clown


Orange Skunk Clown


Percula Clown
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 6:56 pm    Post subject: Scorpionfishes - Scorpaenidae Reply with quote

Scorpions have a poisonous sting. These fishes are named after them for that reason. Most, if not all of the scorpionfishes, also have a poisonous sting, being equipped with poisonous sacs at the base of their dorsal spines. The sting varies from something similar to a bee sting to a very powerful jolt which can cause excruciating pain or even death. Most of the scorpionfishes are too large for marine aquaria. The latter cattegory includes the deadly stone fishes and the most feared of the scorpionfishes.

Members of the genus Pterois, perhaps second in line of dangerous scorpionfishes are very popular aquarium fish. These lionfish or turkeyfish are brightly colored and have outstanding fin development. Most of the comments will be applicable to these species.

Lionfishes prefer live food, they are slow moving and don't usually attempt to escape divers.


Antennata Lionfish


Dwarf Zebra Lionfish


Lacey Lionfish


Leaf Scorpion


Mombasa Lionfish


Reef Stonefish


Sea Goblin


Short Fin Dwarf Lionfish


Spotted Stonefish
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 7:45 pm    Post subject: Surgeonfishes - Acanthuridae Reply with quote

There are many common names applied to this family, Surgeonfish, Doctorfish, Tangs, Lancetfish, and Unicornfish. Many of these names are based on the outstanding charaxteristic of this group, namely one or more sharp spines on each side of the caudal peduncle.

These spines are formidable weapons being sharp and directed forwards. They are often marked with contrasting colors, making them quite conspicuous, perhaps as a warning to other fishes.

The body is flat and disc-shaped. Both dorsal and anal fins are continous, that is, without a broken outline. There are many species in the family containing several variations on the basic shape. The genus Naso develops a long nose in the adult, nd the species in the genus Zebrasoma have very high dorsal and anal fins.

Surgeonfishes are tropical marine fishes found on coral reefs along with the butterflyfishes and angelfishes. Their chief food is algae .


Achilles Tang


Blonde Naso Tang


Chevron Tang


Mustard Surgeonfish


Naso Unicornus Tang


Naso Tang


Orange Shoulder Tang


Pacific Blue Tang


Powder Blue Tang


Red Sea Sailfin Tang


Scopas Tang


Tennents Tang


Yellow Tang


Sohal Tang
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 30, 2008 1:46 pm    Post subject: Sea Horses & Pipefish - Syngnathidae Reply with quote

Sea horses and pipefishes are very distinctive creatures with their scales modified into plates that fit closely together forming a flexible armor. The pipefishes are more eel or snake like, being stretched out into a straight line from the tip of the snout to the tip of the tail. Sea horses on the other hand have heads bent at an angle to the body and swim "upright" in the water. Both groups have a small dorsal fin in the middle of the back. Their small tubular mouths are adapted for feeding on the drifting organisms call plankton.

Sea horses are fascinating little fishes. The head is the most conspicuous character, shaped somewhat like that of a horse, and set at an angle to the body. The tail is prehensile, similar to that of a monkey, and is used to hang on to some feature of the bottom such as blades of grass. Sea horses have small fins and their locomotion is accomplished mainly through use of the dorsal and pectoral fins. These latter fins are attached just behind the gill openings, appear like tiny ears.

In many fishes, the male will take part, even the dominant part, in caring for the eggs and young. This is carried to the extreme in sea horses. The male, and NOT the female gives birth to the young! When the fishes are ready for spawning, a courtship takes place which climaxes with the female inserting her ovipositor into a specially constructed brood pouch on the ventral side of the male. Here the female deposits the eggs which are fertilized inside by the male, and where they undergoe a period of incubation. The male's pregnancy' becomes more and more apparent until the time for birth when he goes into violent contortions as the young are popped out one or several at a time until all are expelled. These young are tiny replicas of their parents complete with prehensile tail. It is not uncommon to find one or more of these young firmly holding on to the snout of the parent. The female does not take part in the proceeding and hsould be removed. After the birth of the young, the male can also be removed.

Sea horses have hearty appetites, and there should be some food available in their tanks almost continuously. Life brine shrimp, baby puppies and occasional white worms

Sea horses are found in places where there is a current. They anchor themselves to the bottom by curling their tails around some object and await food that the current brings to them.










Leafy Sea Dragon


Leafy Sea Dragon

Pipefishes
the pipefishes are very similar to the sea horses except that the head is in a straight line with the body. The body is slender and eel like, but encased in a semi rigid armor of modified scales. They are found in the same habitates as sea horses and are easily collected through the use of a beach seine.

The color pattern of pipefishes varies from plain, mottled or delicately striped to boldly barred. In addition to the small dorsal and pectoral fins, pipefishes have a caudal fin.

The male pipefish carries the eggs until hatching, much like the sea horses. Spawning is accomplishedd by the intertwining of the long snake like bodies and usually occurs in the late spring or early summer.



Alligator Pipefish


Banded Pipefish


Detail of head of pipefish


Janss' pipefish
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 30, 2008 2:48 pm    Post subject: Gobies - Gobiidae Reply with quote

Gobies are small fishes that are usually elongate and have one or more dorsal fins. The most distinguishing feature is the pelvic fin. They are fused along the ventral line so that they form a complete disc which acts like a suction cup to hold the fish in place. They usually fasten themselves onto a rock or blade of grass.

The family Gobiidae is very large. There are hundreds of species occurring in all parts of the world and in a wide variety of habitats. Some have taken up a pelagic existence while others have taken on the chores of the cleaningn wrasse, Labroides.

Gobies are usually shy and stay hidden or within quick reach of some shelter. They prepare a nest by cleaning the surface of a smooth object, such as a shell or rock, and deposit the eggs therein. The eggs are attached to the spawning site and are guarded by both parents until hatching, then it's every fish for itself.

These fishes are hardy and eat a wide variet of foods.


Aurora Shrimp Goby


Blue Spot Watchman Goby


Citron Goby


Engineer Goby


Neon Cleaner Goby


Randalls Shrimp Goby


Razor Goby


Red Firefish Goby


Skunk Tilefish Goby


Twin Spot Signal Goby
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 30, 2008 2:59 pm    Post subject: Goatfishes - Mullidae Reply with quote

The most distinctive characteristic of the goatfishes is the presence of two barbels affixed to the tip of the chin. These barbels were likened to the whiskers of a goat, hence the common name. They are sensitive to the touch, contain taste buds, and are used in searching for food. Goatfishes have two separate dorsal fins.


Bicolor Goatfish


Goldsaddle Goatfish
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 30, 2008 3:07 pm    Post subject: Moonfish - Monodacrylidae Reply with quote

The monos, as they are sometimes called, are very compressed, deep bodied, silver colored fishes with tiny scales and elongated dorsal and anal fins. The first rays of these fins end in rounded scaled tabs.

There are only two or three known species in this family, all basically silver colored. They do well in fresh water as well as salt water and can be changed back and forth if the change is gradual.


Monodactylus argenteus
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 30, 2008 3:23 pm    Post subject: Batfishes - Platacidae Reply with quote

This small faimly of fishes has only four known species. They are very hardy fish, eat a wide variety of foods, they are not shy, and have a very aesthetically pleasing shape.

The body shape changes dramatically from juvenile to adult. Juveniles of all four species have elongate dorsal, anal, and pelvic fins making them somewhat higher than long. As they grow, their fins become relatively shorter when compared to body length and the fish takes on a more rounded appearance.

The adults have some characteristics of their color patterns in common. They have a band through the eye and another across the pectoral fin base. In most cases there is a darkening of the posterior end of the body and finds. Batfishes can change color by darkening the entire body, or fading the dark bands and becoming pale. They are excellent mimics, imitating fallen leaves or other objects. Even when searching for these fishes in mangrove areas, where dead leaves are always available, it is difficult to distinguish which is which without poking it. It's 'dying swan' act, where it lies on its side being swept back and forth by the surge is very effective.

These fish are easily trained to take food directly from a divers hand.


Pinnate Batfish


Orbicularis Batfish


Long Finned Batfish
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