Friday, February 8, 2013

Neat Devil Scorpionfish

There will be no diving for me this weekend as a wicked NW swell is kicking up monster surf making conditions sub-par. But, I have some kinda neat pics from last weekend of a devil scorpionfish (Scorpaenopsis diabolus) that was hiding under a ledge.

Photos Copyright 2013 by Barry Fackler
Scorpionfish are masters of camouflage and are often called rockfish or stonefish based on their inanimate appearance. They remain so sedentary that algae grows all over them. They survive by employing their lightning-fast jaws which vacuum in any small fish who wanders too near.

Photo Copyright 2013 by Barry Fackler
While photographing this wonderful creature, a stout moray eel (Gymnothorax eurostus) slithered along over and behind the scorpionfish oblivious to the fact that it was a very much alive predator.

Photo Copyright 2013 by Barry Fackler
I am sorry the last photo is so blurry. I was set up for a macro shot before the eel came along and had to back up to take the photo and didn't have time to adjust the settings. Still, it shows hoe effective the camouflage of the scorpionfish is. Or perhaps how brave/foolish stout moray eels are!

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