ichthyologist: typhlonectes: The Tiny Fish Awards! -…



The Tiny Fish Awards! – Cryptobenthic Reef Fishes

by Joe Dawson

Go snorkeling on a coral reef, and you’ll have a hard time not being impressed by the abundance and variety of the fish there. But the fish most divers see make up less than half of the number (and less than half the species) of fish on the reef.

Cryptobenthic reef fishes comprise the other half. These fish are small, usually less than 2 inches in length, and hide in coral habitats, either by appearance or by their behavior. Even scientists have been slow to start searching for them, but cryptobenthics are turning up in about every reef habitat where scientists have bothered to look!

In the June 5 issue of Current Biology, SERC Scientist Simon Brandl and colleague Christopher Goatley of the University of New England published a quick guide to cryptobenthic reef fishes. Brandl thinks that these little fishes deserve more recognition, and we agree! Therefore, we’re happy to present these honorees with the following awards…

Read more: SERC – Shorelines

photographs: John E. Randall/Hawaii Biological Survey; Goatley and Brandl 2017; Simon Brandl/SERC

Back in the day…

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