A perfect disguise

07 Sep 2011

You think you’ve seen it all. And then you come across masters of camouflage that amaze you with their colours, patterns and un-fish-like behaviour.

Anyone being fortunate enough to spot a frogfish will surely stop and ponder its spectacular and bizarre appearance. They are bottom dwellers, using their tiny fins to clumsily move around, and if the need arises to swim, they suck in water through their massive mouth and eject it from their gill holes behind their head, jet-propelling themselves across the bottom. Attracted to the tasty looking lure on their head, the prey is rapidly swallowed whole as the frogfish literally stretches its mouth to the same size as its body. How creepy is that?

ghostpipefish Edited

Ornate ghostpipefish, with their incredible ability to mimic their surroundings, are a rear find too. They are normally found living around crinoids, featherstars, gorgonian fans and branching black coral bushes. Here they live very well camouflaged by their complex colour patterns and body shape, especially their skin flaps. Another sighting divers practically drool over!

Disguised, yet not impossible to spot. Antonio was lucky to find both at Ali Thila. We’re keeping our fingers crossed for more photo opportunities like this!

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