a field guide to the planet - by Damon Ramsey
A short snorkel on a healthy tropical coral reefs gives you the opportunity to see more vertebrates in a shorter time than any other ecosystem...
This is the largest group of vertebrates in the world.
Aeoliscus strigatus, 'Razorfish' (Panagsama, Philippines).
Pterois sp. 'Lionfish' (Marovo Lagoon, Solomon Islands).
Includes the fast and predatory 'Trevally', known as 'Jacks' in the Americas.
Caranx ignobilis, 'Giant Trevally' (Aitutaki Fiji).
Cephalopholis argus, 'Peacock Grouper', 'Argus Grouper' (Farquar, Seychelles).
Anthias (Mangalonga, Solomon Islands).
Plectorhinchus chaetodonoides, 'Many Spotted Sweetlips', 'Harlequin Sweetlips', juvenile (Panagsama, Philippines). The juvenile of this species impersonates a toxic flatworm.
Goatfish have barbels that hang down from their 'chin'.
Mulloidichthys vanicolensis, 'Yellowfin Goatfish', (Aitutaki Fiji).
Thalassomma hardwicke, 'Six-Banded/Sixbar Wrasse' (Bali Barat NP, Indonesia).
Like Butterflyfish, Angelfish are also rather plate-shaped. However, they are more squarish in profile.
Centropyge flavissima, 'Lemonpeel Angelfish' (Aitutaki Fiji).
Pygoplites diacanthus , 'Regal Angelfish' (Bali Barat NP, Indonesia).
There is only one species in this family.
Zanclus cornutus, 'Moorish idol' (Kakaban, Indonesia).
Zebrasoma veliferum, 'Sailfin Tang', (Aitutaki Fiji).
Acanthurus triostegus, 'Convict Tang', (Aitutaki Fiji).
Melichthys vidua, 'Pink-tailed Triggerfish' (Bali Barat NP, Indonesia).
Canthigaster valentini, 'Valentin's Sharpnose/Black Saddled Puffer/Toby' (Miyako Island, Japan).
Ostracion meleagris, '(White) Spotted Boxfish', (Niue).
Thinking of travelling again after everything settles down? One of the first expeditions I am booked to work on is the NZ sub-Antarctics with Silversea Expeditions and Australia with Coral Expeditions. And here is a shortened version of one of my lectures in a warmer part of the world.