Sunday, April 8, 2007

Not one sailfin blenny, but two

In Reef Fish Identification: Florida, Caribbean, Bahamas, Paul Humann says sailfin blennies (Emblemaria pandionis) are "occasional" in Florida, the Bahamas and the Caribbean. The photo by Laurie Cullenward, Madison, WI, of two, not just one, sailfin blennies in the Caymans confirms Humann's added note that they "can be locally abundant."

Click here for a close up of a sailfin blenny's amazing territorial display.


Friday, April 6, 2007

Poo makes good beaches

Parrotfish feed on algae that they get by biting coral, like this stoplight parrotfish (Sparisoma viride) in the intial phase of its coloring. The parrotfish has specialized grinders in its throat to separate the algae from the coral's hard skeleton. After enjoying the algae, the parrotfish excretes the ground coral as (yep, you guessed it) sand.

The next time you sun on the beaches of Akumal or any other along the coast, be thankful for parrotfish poo.

Thanks to Djaba for posting the photo on the forum of (Click on the photo to get a better view of its teeth.)


Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Lesser electric ray in the Caymans

A friend who dives a lot in the Caymans told me that divers were all excited during her last trip because they'd seen a lesser electric ray. She was surprised by all the excitement because the guitar-shaped ray appears commonly around Akumal, where she dove in the past.

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