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Fish Faces: Banded Butterflyfish


Good morning all, pictured here is a very gentle and fun to watch reef fish called a Banded Butterflyfish or Chaetodon striatus. The name is derived from the dark vertical bands on the fish’s body. This, combined with a vertical black bar through the eye, is an adaptation that can confuse predators. These fish are around five inches in length, can be found easily in the 10-60 foot zone and  are almost always found in pairs. I have been swimming with a certain pair for years, so they are pretty used to me and my giant camera. As I was taking my pictures, one of the pair left the safety of its gorgonian, swam right up to the front of my camera, and proceeded to hang out there without a care in the world, it was great! MORE

Long Island Collecting Log: The next wave has arrived

Spotfin and tangsLast week I reported on the arrival of the first tropical fishes of the year to appear in Long Island waters after a seining trip at Fire Island inlet turned up a filefish, groupers, and northern sennets. This week I am happy to announce that the next wave has arrived. MORE

Reef Kids

octopus clockI love the idea of an ocean-themed nursery or kid’s bedroom, filled with friendly sea creatures to keep the children company. Check out this trio of furnishings, each more charming and friendly than the last.

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Rare Giant Shark Caught Off Australian Coast

 Fisherman in Southwest Australia hauled in a surprising catch on Sunday: a 3 ton, 20 foot long Basking Shark! The Basking Shark is the second largest living fish, after the Whale Shark. This large species is a slow-moving, filter feeder, making it a rarity among shark species. . Since they feed on plankton in the water column, on the few occasions they are spotted, they are often seen near the surface. The catch in Austrailia was only the second Basking Shark found in the area since the 1930’s and the third in 160 years. Unfortunately the animal was dead by the time it was removed from the fishing line. Scientists have stated that they are going to try and make the best of this sad situation by learning as much as possible from this incident. MORE

Football Takes a Hit from The Mantis Shrimp

Researchers from the University of Riverside are studying the internal bone structure of Mantis Shrimp in an effort to reduce the damaging effects of head trauma associated with American Football. Within the dactyl forearms of the Mantis a spiral structure of bone material called chitin is specific, and this formation allows for the buffering of damaging elastic waves such as shear waves, through its forearms. “This is a novel concept,” said David Kisailus, the Winston Chung Endowed Professor in Energy Innovation at UC Riverside’s Bourns College of Engineering. 150617144502_1_540x360Researchers will attempt to apply the architecture of mantis shrimp arms to products such as football helmets and body pads: “It implies that we can make composite materials able to filter certain stress waves that would otherwise damage the material.” “The smasher mantis shrimp will hit many times per day. It is amazing,” said Pablo Zavattieri, an associate professor in the Lyles School of Civil Engineering and a University Faculty Scholar at Purdue University. Read more here!  

Whitespotted Filefish – Monacanthidae

Good morning from Curacao, my tiny Caribbean island home! I have a super cool fish for you all today called a Whitespotted Filefish, Cantherhines macrocerus; it’s one of my personal favorites. This fish has so many unique built-in features, it reminds me of a swimming Swiss Army knife! It has the ability to change and flash colors, it has a retractable spine on top of its head as well as wild-looking spines at the base of its tail, and it can puff up its belly to look bigger and to lock itself into a crevice for protection. Filefish (also known as foolfish, leatherjackets or shingles) are tropical to subtropical tetraodontiform marine fish of the diverse family Monacanthidae. MORE

Neptune Systems Par Monitoring Kit

neptune systems PMK
Neptune Systems is pleased to announce that it will begin shipping its new Par Monitoring Kit, priced at $299.95, to North America next month. For more information, go to: https://www.neptunesystems.com/pmk/

Recall Of Aquarium Heaters


Top Fin Aquarium heaters, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, are on now on recall due to possible fire or electrical hazard to consumers. The heaters were sold at Petsmart from August 2014 to April 2015. The models include 50, 100, 150, 200 and 250 watt aquarium heaters. The company has 13 reports of incidents so far, including fire, four reports of electrical shock and multiple reports of electrical shortage. Petsmart is giving consumers a full refund for any returned units purchased at the store. MORE

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