Tag: FishyFriday

Fishy Friday: Photography Challenge Day 33. Some favorites from the New England Aquarium

So going with the theme #fishyfriday for today’s photos. Instead of doing the fall back pictures of the algae eaters, I decided to share some of the pictures that I’ve taken at the New England Aquarium. This is one of my favorite places to visit in Boston—no matter how many times you visit—it always seems like there is something new to see. You can spot a different fish, or the octopus or anaconda might actually be moving around.

So today’s cast for #fishyfriday include:

Moray Eel

The moray eel, which was emerging from it’s hiding spot when I walked past one of the windows of the large center tank. These eels can be found in all tropical and subtropical seas, living among the coral reefs and hiding in nooks and crannies. While they look threatening by continuously opening and closing their mouths—they are actually just moving water through their gills (aka they’re just breathing).

If they feel threatened they can bite, so if you are out scuba diving and see one—don’t try to get close for a selfie.

Some other cool facts about moray eels:

They have transparent ribbon-like larvae.
They have a set of jaws located in their throats that thrusts forward to pull prey back into their esophaguses (so I wonder if all the weird aliens have been based off someone watching a moray eel eat?)
They have symbiotic relationships, where cleaner shrimp will clean parasites off of them.
There are about 200 species world wide.
They only appear to be blue or green because of the toxic mucus that they secrete to help navigate through the crevices of the coral reefs.

The second picture is of a ray swimming among the different fish. Now I’m not sure exactly what species of ray this is—but I just love how they seem to “fly” through the water.

Ray swimming through the fishes.

So rays are actually the largest group of cartilaginous fish, with over 600 different species found within 26 different families. Their gills are actually located under their pectoral fins that are fused to their heads. These beautiful creatures live for the most part close to the sea floor, usually within the warmer waters of the tropical and subtropical oceans and seas (though there a handful of species that can live in cooler waters). They diet is as varied as their locations—plankton to snails and clams to the occasional other fish.

The final picture is of a weedy (or common) sea dragon.

The weedy or common seadragon

The weedy sea dragon is a relative of the seahorse. These fish have a reddish color, with small leaf-like appendages (hence the names weedy and leafy sea dragons). The leaf-like appendages provide camouflage as they’re swimming through the seaweed.

Other facts about the weedy sea dragon:
It is found solely in the waters off of Australia—specifically around New South Wales, Western Australia, and Tasmania.
Like the seahorse—the male cares for the developing young. He carries the eggs until they hatch (~1 month), and the young are independent at birth. It takes a little over 2 years before sea dragons reach sexual maturity.
Mating in captivity is rare—though there are several aquariums around the world that have been able to successful bred the weedy sea dragon.

There are several threats to the weedy sea dragon (though it’s listed as least concern on the endangered species list):
Habitat loss and degradation and pollution are the biggest threats to the sea dragons. They live in seagrass beds, and don’t “migrate” far from what they’re use to, and therefore if seagrass beds start to decline, so will their populations.

References: Copying & pasting the links below with take you to webpages outside of my blog. I do not endorse any of them—they’re just various pages that I found information on the fish that I decided to share pictures of. By acknowledging their pages—I’m acknowledging that there is still things for me to learn about the creatures that inhabit the oceans.


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Fishy Friday: Photography Challenge Day 19

So one of the 30 day challenges that I think were in both of the books that I read last month was a photography challenge. Though I’m going to try to take it out to a full year (if not longer). One of the big tips from one of them, was to have taken more than one picture per day–just in case you come across a day that you either run out of time, or can’t find the inspiration for a photo.

So now I am trying to find inspiration for several photographs a day–this will probably work best on the weekends when it warms up and I’m doing my morning walks & outside more than what I am during the winter months.

One of the algae eaters and the shubunkin

So today’s photograph is of two of the fish in our large aquarium–the shubunkin and one of the algae eaters (I think it’s Cletus as it looks a little small to be Jaws). That is the only way that I can tell the two algae eaters apart (well also when I feed them–Cletus heads into it’s log to munch on the algae pellet), is their size. Jaws is just a little bit longer than Cletus. I think the fifty-five gallon aquarium is just the right size for two good size algae eaters and one decent size shubunkin.

One of the things that I will be investing in when I move is going to be an aquarium so that the cat can have her fish tv again–the algae eater in the smaller aquarium doesn’t swim around as much as these guys.

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