Tag Archive: fishes


TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Tetraodontiformes (Puffers and filefishes)
Family: Monacanthidae (Filefishes)

Genus/species: Oxymonacanthus longirostris

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: their color is pale blue with about eight longitudinal rows of orange-yellow patches, or green with small dark-edged yellow to orange spots.Their is a dark spot on the caudal fin. The snout is long with a small upturned mouth;

Length up to 12 cm (4.72 in)

DISTRIBUTION/ HABITAT: They are found in the Indo-Pacific. in clear lagoons and seaward reefs.

DIET IN THE WILD: Feeds almost exclusively on Acropora polyps throughout the day. The protruding snout and teeth that project from small mouth, permit them to snip off coral polyps. In captivity they can be fed a number of other food items, such as fish eggs, tiny mysid shrimp, and flake and pellet food.

 

REPRODUCTION: The Orange Spotted Filefish are found in pairs or small groups and nests near the bases of dead corals, often on clumps of algae. Monogamous except if the male population dwindles, then the largest males, become polygamous, breeding with more than one female. The male chatters his mouth along the underside of the female’s jaw presumably to synchronize the spawn. The female places her abdomen into the algae, and the male joins her alongside to fertilize. Non-guarders.

REMARKS: O.longirostris feeds on Acropora corals in Australia, ingesting coral chemicals which cause them to take on the scent of their food (Acropora).  This is the first time scientists have discovered a vertebrate chemically camouflaging itself via its diet, The cod were less active and spent less time hunting around the filefish that ate Acropora than around the fish that ate Pocillopora, indicating that the cod could not detect the Acropora-eating filefish.

References

California Academy of Sciences Animal Attractions Rich Ross 2017

Ron’s flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/4540304067/in/set-72157625020091079/

News National Geographic.com  news.nationalgeographic.com/news/fish-smell-like-the-cora…

fishbase www.fishbase.org/summary/Oxymonacanthus-longirostris.html

EOL eol.org/pages/204726/details

Ron’s WordPress Shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-oY



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order:Perciformes (Perch-likes)
Family: Pomacentridae (Damselfishes, Chromis, Aneomonefishes)
Subfamily: Amphiprioninae (anemonefishes)

Genus/species: Amphiprion ocellaris

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Adults are orange with three broad vertical white bands with thin black margins. Females are larger than males. Similar to the Clown Anemonefish (Amphiprion percula) but has 11 spines in the dorsal fin compared to 10, while the spiny part of the dorsal fin is also taller.

Length up to 9 cm (3.5 inches)

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Found among tropical Pacific Ocean coral reefs. They sleep and feed among the tentacles of their host anemone. Stichodactyla gigantea, Stichodactyla mertensi, as well as the anemone Heteractis magnifica and others. The False Clownfish is usually found at depths of about 15 m (50 ft).

(Amphiprion ocellaris) aka FALSE CLOWNFISH

DIET IN THE WILD: Feeds primarily on zooplankton, especially copepods and also on filamentous algae.

REPRODUCTION: A. ocellaris breeds continuously at the Steinhart. Adhesive eggs are laid on a patch of cleared rock near the host anemone’s base and guarded by the male. Eggs hatch after 10 days. The tiny transparent planktonic larvae swim away from the anemone. Two weeks later the larvae metamorphose into small fish. As protandrous hermaphrodites; all individuals mature as males, and all females are sex-reversed males. In the absence of a female the largest male will turn into a female.

Longevity: Up to 12 years in captivity

REMARKS:  Clownfish and anemone display a classic case of mutualism. Clownfish become resistant to their host by gradually (matter of minutes to days) acquiring a covering of mucus
by brushing against the tentacles of their host. Once the fish has become chemosensorilly camouflaged, the host anemone’s nematocysts do not sting the clownfish.

Some of the anemone’s nutrition results from the clownfish’s activities; clownfish gain protection among the anemone’s nematocysts.

Nemo and his parents in Finding Nemo resemble this species. That said, Marlin, Nemo’s father, given the scenario would have changed into a female following the death of Nemo’s mother and remained near his host anemone, rather than swimming to Sydney. But then the film makers wouldn’t have a narrative to support this film! The name “Nemo” has found its way into FishBase (http://www.fishbase.org) as a common name for this species in the USA!        

References

California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium Philippine coral reef 2016

Animal Diversity Web  animaldiversity.org/accounts/Amphiprion_ocellaris/

fishbase  fishbase.org/summary/Amphiprion-ocellaris.html

Flickr  http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/sets/72157608339622313/

WordPress shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-mp

 

TAXONOMY

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Orders: Lophiiformes (Anglerfishes)
Family: Antennaridae (frogfishes)

Genus/species: Antennarius maculatus

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: A. maculatus has numerous wart-like protuberances resembling rock or coral.  Coloration can be changed and is highly variable, ranging from cream to yellow, brown, or black with scattered dark circular spots and saddles or blotches ranging from white to pink, rust-red, or red. It may change to white with coral bleaching.

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The first dorsal spine, the illicium is modified and is used as a fishing rod. Its extremity is endowed with a characteristic esca (lure), which looks like a small fish with a pinkish to brownish coloration. The pectoral fins are angled and help, with the pelvic fins, to move the fish on the bottom and to keep a stable position for ambush predation.

Length up to 15 cm (6 inches).

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Indian and Western Pacific Oceans among sheltered rocky reefs, algae, sponges and soft corals to 15 meters (49 feet).  It is a reef dweller, perching on coral ledges.

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DIET IN THE WILD: The Warty Frogfish has its own lure (esca) to catch and consume shrimp and fishes in less the 6 ms-one of the fastest feeding times for vertebrates.

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REPRODUCTION: Oviparous. Eggs are bound in ribbon-like sheath or mass of gelatinous mucus called ‘egg raft’ or ‘veil’.
During mating they do not tolerate each other except for the act of fertilization. The female can kill or eat the male if he stays close.

LIFESPAN: 3-5 years.

CONSERVATION: IUCN Red List Not Evaluated

REMARKS: The warty frogfish exhibits when illuminated by blue or ultraviolet light, it re-emits it as red, which may assist intraspecific communication and camouflage.

Color of Life note: Concealment by camouflage. The Warty frogfish has a bumpy surface with variable colors typical of corals.

References

California Academy of Sciences:  Steinhart Aquarium Color on the Reef  2017

EOL  http://eol.org/pages/205404/details

fishbase  http://fishbase.org/summary/Antennarius-maculatus.html

Ron’s WordPress shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-jX

Reef sites (color changes) http://www.readcube.com/articles/10.1007/s00338-016-1500-6?author_access_token=QUU5tuAAHyf1lyvDYxkzJPe4RwlQNchNByi7wbcMAY7Z0HBANUYKVVBBJDO0QDoP-bDRJZ9Bhk4OJAon8AHurEXVNikB9zR_mJh84KLzMLA2wUITSMK6S7kRi0s4vsexmplaeSw93llcvBJo7jTI_g%3D%3D

Ron’s flickr  https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/8296644088/in/album-72157652559028013/

TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Perciformes (Perch-likes)
Family:  Haemulidae (Grunts) bottom-feeding predators, named for their ability to produce sound by grinding their teeth.

Genus/species  Plectorhinchus chaetodonoides  

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Juveniles brown with large white blotches. Becomes more spotted with age, reversing from white to black spotted in the process. Deeper bodies compared to most others in the genus

Length is up to 72 cm (29 inches) and weight to 7,000 g (15.5 pounds)

Spotted Sweetlips IMG_0501

 DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT Indo-West Pacific oceans. Inhabits coral-rich areas of clear lagoon and seaward reefs. 1 – 30 m (3-90 ft).

 

DIET IN THE WILD: Carnivore. Feeds on crustaceans, mollusks, and fishes at night.

CONSERVATION: IUCN Not evaluated

References

California Academy of Sciences Philippine coral reef 2016

Ron’s flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/sets/72157625992053826/

Ron’s WordPress Shortlink    http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-nP

fishbase fishbase.org/summary/Plectorhinchus-chaetodonoides.html

TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Perciformes (Perch-likes)
Family: Acanthuridae (Surgeonfishes, tangs, unicornfishes)

Genus/species: Acanthurus triostegus

Convict surgeonfish 8156826256_a90f659c94_o

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Very common surgeonfish.  Oval in profile and laterally compressed, gray with 4 vertical stripes (1 stripe on head across the yellow eye; 1 on caudal peduncle). Erectile spine on each side of caudal peduncle which folds down into a groove.  This scalpel like spine cause a nasty cut if the fish is treated roughly by a predator or a human. 

Common length : 17.0 cm (6.7 inches).

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Indo-Pacific. Found in lagoon and seaward reefs in areas of hard substrates from sea level to 90 m (300 feet); typically occur in shallows to 5 m (16 feet).

DIET IN THE WILD: herbivores; use serrated teeth along the edges creating small saw-like that assists in removing filamentous algae from the substrate.

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REPRODUCTION: the Convict Tang spawns at dusk with females broadcasting eggs into open water where the males fertilize them.  Larvae drift ~75 days. Post-larvae settle in intertidal areas of benches and reef flats.

PREDATORS: Eggs and sperm are preyed upon by eagle rays, which are often present during spawning.

CONSERVATION: IUCN, Least concern.

REMARKS: This black-barred fish’s common name presumably alludes to the coloration of many prison uniforms of the previous century.

 

References

California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium Philippine Coral Reef 2016

fishbase  www.fishbase.org/summary/1260

Ron’s WordPress shortlink  wp.me/p1DZ4b-lR

 

Ron’s Flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/3185789781/in/set-72157608332652056/

Aquarium of the Pacific www.aquariumofpacific.org/onlinelearningcenter/species/co…

Monterey Bay Aquarium www.montereybayaquarium.org/animals/AnimalDetails.aspx?en…

EOL eol.org/pages/203984/overview

 

TAXONOMY
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Perciformes
Family: Gobiesocidae

Genus/species: Gobiesox maeandricus

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Like all clingfish, the northern clingfish possesses an adhesive disc, partially developed from the pelvic fins, that allows it to cling tightly to rocks or blades of kelp even in strong currents or crashing waves. The tapering, tadpole-shaped body, about 17 cm (6.5 in) long, has a single, posteriorly located dorsal fin, a fanlike caudal fin, no spines, and a flattened head. The skin is smooth and scaleless, with a thick layer of protective mucus. Its cryptic coloration makes the animal difficult to see among rocks or kelp.

DISTRIBUTION/ HABITAT: The family totals about 150 species worldwide; only 2 – the northern kelpfish (Gobiesox maeandricus) and the kelp clingfish (Rimicola muscarum) are found in northern California. They are bottom-dwelling fishes, typically found on or under rocks or high up in the kelp.

DIET IN THE WILD: Worms, molluscs, small crabs and other crustaceans.

PREDATORS: The clingfish is preyed upon by various aquatic animals that hunt among the rocks at high tide, and terrestrial predators such as snakes and raccoons that hunt at low tide.

REPRODUCTION: The male nudges the female’s belly. If she accepts him, the male moves parallel to her and quivers, stimulating egg laying. Fertilized eggs are deposited on stones, algae, or other bottom material, and are usually guarded by the male. Larvae are planktonic. Life span is about two years.

CONSERVATION: IUCN Red List Status Not Evaluated 

REMARKS: Like a number of other bottom-dwelling fishes, clingfish lack swim bladders, an internal sac used by the majority of fish species to control their position in the water. Clingfish can adhere so tightly to a surface that a rock might be moved some distance by strong currents with the fish still attached! Its suction cup also holds water from which the fish can extract oxygen even when exposed by a low tide.

References

California Academy of Sciences Tidepool Docent Guide 2015

fishbase  www.fishbase.org/summary/3075

Eschmeyer, W.N., E.S. Herald and H. Hammann, 1983. A field guide to Pacific coast fishes of North America. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, U.S.A. 336 p.

Encyclopedia of Life eol.org/pages/203811/details

Ron’s flickr  http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/sets/72157626486149324/

Ron’s WordPress shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-vx

TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Syngnathiformes (Pipefishes and seahorses)
Family: Syngnathidae (Seahorses, Pipefishes, and Seadragons)

Genus/species: Phycodurus eques

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Color varies from brown tones,to greenish or reddish depending on depth. Their body is scaleless and covered is in hard bony plates with long sharp spines on each bony plate that may be defensive. Leaf-like appendages protrude from the head, body, and tail and transparent dorsal and pectoral fins. Their long, thin pipe-like snout has no jaw.
Maximum length of the leafy seadragon is about 35 cm (14 in).

leafy seadragon11042381084_94c0a006a8_k

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Endemic to southern Australia.
Found amongst brown algae (kelp) in shallow, temperate water, associated with seagrass beds and rocky reefs.

DIET IN THE WILD: Do not have a jaw, teeth or a stomach. They swallow their prey whole by creating a suction to suck mysid shrimp, zooplankton and fish larvae into their mouths.

REPRODUCTION: Like the seahorse, the male seadragon carries the eggs. He develops about 120 shallow depressions in a spongy section of the ventral surface of his tail. The female deposits her eggs in the depressions.

LONGEVITY: 7-10 yrs.

PREDATORS: Depend on camouflage and sway like plants in the water to hide from predators.

CONSERVATION:IUCN Red List (2006.) Near Threatened. Habitat destruction, pollution, excessive fertilizer runoff, and poaching by humans has lead to a decrease in numbers. They are fully protected with special licenses required to collect or export them.

REMARKS: Unlike its seahorse relative that swims vertically, the seadragon swims horizontally. It is a very slow swimmer, as might be expected from its tiny fins, but is protected not only by its camouflage but by sharp spines that deter predators.
The leafy seadragon has the honor of being the official emblem of Australia.

leafy seadragon2980686562_a871c0e383_b

Color of Life
P. eques moves very slowly through the water and mimics seaweed, which makes it a master at camouflage.

References

California Academy of Sciences Water planet: Centerpiece Water Dependence 2015

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/11042381084/in/album-72157608441047857/

Ron’s WordPress shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-1C2

fishbase fishbase.org/summary/Phycodurus-eques.html

Animal Diversity Web animaldiversity.org/accounts/Phycodurus_eques/

IUCN Red List www.iucnredlist.org/details/17096/0

Aquarium of the Pacific www.aquariumofpacific.org/onlinelearningcenter/species/le…

 

https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/6427211687/in/album-72157652559028013/

TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (Ray-finned fishes)
Order: Tetraodontiformes (Puffers and filefishes)
Family: Tetraodontidae (Puffers)

Genus/species: Canthigaster valentini

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: C. valentini has a white body with four distinct black stripes on the upper half. The body is also covered with brownish-orange dots. It has yellow fins, and blue striping running along the back. It lacks pelvic fins, but has learned to use the pectoral fins to move about the aquarium.
Males have blue-green lines radiating from the back of the eyes. They are also larger than females and may also have a light gray patch in front of the anus.

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Occurs throughout the tropical, marine Indo-Pacific where it is common and locally abundant. It inhabits a wide range of coral reef and seagrass habitats at depths ranging from 1 to 55 metres.

DIET IN THE WILD: Forages on the benthos, feeding mainly on filamentous green and red algae, tunicates, and on smaller amounts of corals, bryozoans, polychaetes, echinoderms, mollusks.

CONSERVATION: IUCN Red List Least Concern (LC)

REMARKS: They are capable of inflating their abdomens with water when frightened or disturbed.
They can produce toxins such as tetrodotoxin and saxitoxin in the skin, gonads, and liver. Try not to use a net when handling this fish since it’s flesh is poisonous.The degree of toxicity varies by species, and also according to geographic area and season.

Color of Life:Color Communicates. The Mimic filefish (not shown here) evades predators by mimicking the Sharpnose Puffer (Canthigaster valentini).

The Mimic filefish can be distinguished from the Sharpnose Puffer (highly poisonous) by comparing their dorsal fins. The Mimic filefish has two dorsal fins, while the Sharpnose Puffer above has only one. – See more at: australianmuseum.net.au/blacksaddle-filefish-paraluteres-…

LOCATION:  COLOR CLUSTER   

 

References

California Academy of Sciences Color on the Reef exhibit 2015

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/6427211687/in/album-72157652559028013/

Ron’s WordPress shortlink:  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-iz

Australian Museum  australianmuseum.net.au/blacksaddle-toby-canthigaster-val…

Encyclopedia of life  eol.org/pages/225023/overview

 


TAXONOMY

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Cyprinodontiformes (Rivulines, killifishes and live bearers)
Family: Nothobranchiidae (African rivulines)

Genus/species: Fundulopanchax sjostedti

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Brightly colored killifish.

Blue Gularis Killifish20750345676_f4b54fecfe_z

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Africa: Niger delta in southern and southeastern Nigeria and southwestern Cameroon. Found in temporary swamps, raphia-swamps and swampy parts of slow flowing brooks in the swampy coastal rainforest.

DIET IN THE WILD: Insect Larvae

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REPRODUCTION: Bottom spawner. It lays eggs in the mud which drys out during the dry season. The adults die but the eggs lie dormant and hatch when the rains return.

IUCN Red List: Least Concern (LC)

References

California Academy of Sciences, Water is life exhibit 2015)

fishbase fishbase.org/summary/9792

IUCN Red List www.iucnredlist.org/details/full/181696/0

Ron’s flickr  https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/20589851839/in/dateposted/

WordPress shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-1zH

TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Cyprinodontiformes (Rivulines, killifishes and live bearers)                                                                                        Family: Poeciliidae

Genus/species: Alafro cultratus

Alafro cultratus16167676782_36fa409f32_k

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Max length : 7.5 cm.

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Central America: Costa Rica, Panama and Nicaragua. Found in rapidly flowing rainforest streams.

DIET IN THE WILD: Insectivorous, aquatic and terrestrial insects.

REPRODUCTION: Internal live bearers. Gestation lasts for about 24 days. Produces 10 to 30, rarely more, young.

CONSERVATION: IUCN AND CITIES Not Evaluated

References

fishbase www.fishbase.gr/summary/46449

Encyclopedia of Life eol.org/pages/1157656/hierarchy_entries/44712641/details

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/16167676782/in/set-72157620708938680

Ron’s WordPress Shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-1tM

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