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Category Archives: Science

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Blue Tang, Acanthurus coeruleus

Good morning all, what a week!! So much diving in freezing cold water, it really wears you out! Aimee and I have been packing like crazy to get ready for our Washington trip which is now only days away. We have a friend staying at our house and all the neighbors will be helping walk the dogs throughout the day, that alone is a big relief! I have been so busy this week that I wasn’t able to go biking at all but tomorrow morning I will be making up for lost time in the saddle and picking up a friend at 7:30. I have a beautiful Blue Tang for you all today that I found swimming under a pier up against a beautiful sponge encrusted wall!

ATI T5 Bulb Comparison

reefs.comATIcomparisonT5 lighting is still very popular among aquarists, with ATI bulbs generally being the number one choice. “What’s the best bulb combo?” is probably the most frequently discussed topic in the T5 world. For the most part it boils down to personal preference, but without purchasing all the bulbs to try over your own tank the decision can seem daunting. Than Thein, owner of Advanced Reef Aquarium and Tidal Gardens, created these phenomenal videos that cover each bulb individually, as well as several bulb combinations, to help you decide prior to purchase.… More:

Lionfish: Colorful Invasive Reef Fish

Good morning all, I have a fun Lionfish portrait for you all today that I shot yesterday with my trusty 105 macro. We still see these beautiful invasive fish on every dive but on some reefs they are really doing a good job at keeping the numbers down. We ended up doing three dives yesterday, two of them were with my intern trying to teach him something about the difficulties of underwater photography, he’s finding out it’s not so easy…. Pretty much everything about the venomous lionfish—its red-and-white zebra stripes, long, showy pectoral fins, and generally cantankerous demeanor—says, “Don’t touch!” The venom of the lionfish, delivered via an array of up to 18 needle-like dorsal fins, is purely defensive. It relies on camouflage and lightning-fast reflexes to capture prey, mainly fish and shrimp.

Coral Atoll: A New App for Reef Enthusiasts

[embedded content] Atoll is a new app available for reef aquarium and diving enthusiasts to download on the iPhone. Atoll is an interactive mobile app which includes a comprehensive database of coral.  Atoll provides vibrant photos and detailed information allowing users to more easily identify coral which they encounter on a dive or purchase as an addition to their aquarium.  This can be critical information especially when dealing with corals which exhibit aggressive behavior and could potentially wreak havoc in your aquarium if placed in close proximity to other species.  Atoll also provides useful information to hobbyists relating to appropriate water temperatures and pH levels for your own aquarium. Atoll also allows users to submit photos of unknown coral for the community to identify. This is

Delicate Rose Lace Coral

Well folks, I’m wiped out after another day of non-stop diving in freezing Caribbean water, I just want to go to bed!!! I still have my intern for one more day, we both did a long photo dive at 4:00 today and I had to exit early due to freezing hands, I hate this time of year for diving.. I have a little, very delicate Rose Lace coral for you all today that I shot in the mouth of a little cave on our Substation house reef. This hydrocoral form small colonies, with up to 7 cm high by 11 cm wide. If you look closely the polyps have an appearance of hair when extended, but because the corals are so small they are hard to see

Spare the Net for These 5 Fish Types

Large bruisers, such as Miniatus grouper (Cephalopholis miniatus), are best wrangled without the use of a netMoving a marine fish from one tank to another is a straightforward process. You grab a fish net of appropriate size, scoop out the specimen, and release it in its new home. At most, you might have to work with two nets, using the second net to gently herd the fish into the first. Easy peasy, right? Ah, but don’t reach for that ubiquitous green net just yet! For some fish, transfer by net isn’t an ideal alternative. Here are five fish types that are best moved using different means:Type 1: Spiny/spiky and venomous Fish sporting venomous spines, such as lionfishes, scorpionfishes, and rabbitfishes, should never be transferred by net for two very good reasons

Noise Pollution Can Be Deadly For Many Species

A new study, published in Nature Communications, indicates that noise pollution can be deadly for many species of fish. Noise pollution can be created above or below the water. For example, it can noise made through motorboats, cruise ships, sonar probes and even motor vehicles and planes. The problem comes is  due to the fact that many animals use sound to help locate their food, alert each other to predators and for mating purposes. So with lots of unnatural outside noise present, some animals may not able to function accordingly. Scientists studied damselfish  (very common in saltwater tanks) and discovered that the fish become distressed when affected by the outside noise, noting that the fish consumed 20 to 30 percent more oxygen than when the noise wasn’t present. Increased oxygen consumption is a sign of stress in fish.  Neon_damselfishMore:

Epithet etymology: Cirrhilabrus rhomboidalis, the diamond-tail fairy wrasse

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Cirrhilabrus rhomboidalis, the diamond-tail fairy wrasse. Photo credit: Lemon TYK.

 Today on epithet etymology, we feature yet another labrid, this time from the genus Cirrhilabrus. Cirrhilabrus are small, colourful fish that are are highly deserving of their colloquial name – “fairy wrasses”. Having extensively discussed about their biogeography and phylogeny elsewhere, we’ll keep this one short and dive right into the etymology behind the name. What makes Cirrhilabrus rhomboidalis, Cirrhilabrus rhomboidalis? … More:

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