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Coral Reef Fishes

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Firefish (Nemateleotris magnifica)
Firefish
(Nemateleotris magnifica)

Firefishes are characterized by their bright colors and by their unusually elongated dorsal fin. This fin is used as a signaling device to communicate with other firefishes. It is also used by the fish to wedge itself into small crevasses as a means of protection from predators. Firefishes are found throughout the Indo-Pacific.

Purple Firefish (Nemateleotris decora)
Purple Firefish
(Nemateleotris decora)

The purple firefish gets its name from its bright purple and red markings. Like other firefish species, it has an elongated dorsal fin that is used for signaling other firefishes and for locking itself into holes and crevasses. Firefishes are bottom feeders, eating plankton and small crustaceans. They grow to a length of about 2 inches.

Royal Gramma (Gramma loreto)
Royal Gramma
(Gramma loreto)

The royal gramma is a beautiful coral reef fish found only in Caribbean reefs. This fish is very shy and secretive, and feeds on drifting plankton and small crustaceans. The yellow and purple coloration of this species appears darker underwater, helping the fish to blend in with its surroundings. Royal grammas are found throughout the western Atlantic Ocean.

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