Thursday, December 25, 2008

Penguin Island - fishes (1)

Some of the fishes I saw while snorkeling around the reef platform at the southern end of the Penguin Island three days ago:

A female Shaw's cowfish - Aracana aurita
This boxfish has three pairs of blunt spines on the body. One pair of the spines are over its eyes, which is possibly why it's called a cow-fish.

In a group, there are one dominant male fish, one dominant female and other females. When the male fish dies or disappears for whatever reasons, the dominant female will mourn by changing its sex and become a male! A male fish has blue and yellow stripes on its body.

Western butterfish - Pentapodus vitta

1. Blue-spotted goatfish (Upeneichthys vlamingii)
2. Zebra fish (Girella zebra)
3. Crested morwong (Cheilodactylus gibbosus)
4. Gobblegut - (Apogon rueppellii)

An interesting thing about gobbleguts is that the male incubates the eggs in its mouth until hatching!

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