Manta soars overhead at Wreck diving Lady Elliot Island. Scuba holiday travel planning for Lady Elliot Island - where, who and how

Biodiversity #10 – The Manta Ray

Biodiversity #10 – Manta rays are among the largest fish in the ocean, growing up to 7m from wing tip to wing tip. Manta rays also have the largest brain to body size ratio of any living fish. They are completely harmless unless you happen to be a plankton. They are aware of, and interact with divers.

 

Spotted Sweetlips (Plectorhinchus chaetodontoides). In the family of Sweetlips. (Scientific name: HAEMULIDAE). Taken at Cocos Keeling Islands by: diveplanit.com

Spotted Sweetlips

Look for the big lips with white mouth followed by big eyes, followed by dark spots all over pale body and tail.

 

Mimic Surgeonfish. In the family of Surgeonfish. (Scientific name: ACANTHURIDAE). Taken at Cocos Keeling Islands by: diveplanit.com

Mimic Surgeonfish

Greeny-brown body with dark blue dorsal and anal fins; white mouth, and black band running from mouth to gill cover. Orange patch behind the pectoral fin.

 

Stars and Stripes Pufferfish. In the family of Pufferfish. (Scientific name: TETRAODONTIDAE). Taken at Cocos Keeling Islands by: diveplanit.com

Stars and Stripes Pufferfish

Identify as a pufferfish through lack of spines, paddle-like pectoral fins, posterior and anal fins. Slow ungainly swimmer. Named Star & Stripes after the spots on top and the stripes underneath.

 

Rounded Batfish. In the family of Batfish. (Scientific name: EPHIPPIDAE). Taken at Cocos (Keeling) Islands by: diveplanit.com

Round Batfish

Batfish look a little like pewter plates standing vertically in the water. Silvery, slow moving – quite majestic – unlike any other fish. (And nothing like a fruit bat, cricket bat or any other kind of bat!) Here you can see face on, and it almost has a round face.

 

Horned Bannerfish. In the family of Butterflyfish. (Scientific name: CHAETODONTIDAE). Taken at Cocos (Keeling) Islands by: diveplanit.com

Horned Bannerfish

Similar in shape to other bannerfish, but differentiated by a ‘horn’ or even horns created by a sickle shaped notch in the forehead.

 

Clark's Anemonefish. In the family of Damselfish. (Scientific name: POMACENTRIDAE). Taken at Cocos (Keeling) Islands by: diveplanit.com

Clark’s Anemonefish

Two broad vertical pale bands across very dark coloured body, one between the eye and pectoral fin, the other just passed the middle. Yellow/orange caudal (tail) and pectoral too, and little pink face. Similar colouring to a Humbug (- like the anemonefish, is also a Damselfish).

 

Horned Bannerfish. In the family of Butterflyfish. (Scientific name: CHAETODONTIDAE). Taken at Cocos (Keeling) Islands by: diveplanit.com

Horned Bannerfish

Similar in shape to other bannerfish, but differentiated by a ‘horn’ or even horns created by a sickle shaped notch in the forehead.

 

Rounded Batfish. In the family of Batfish. (Scientific name: EPHIPPIDAE). Taken at Cocos (Keeling) Islands by: diveplanit.com

Rounded Batfish

Batfish look a little like pewter plates standing vertically in the water. Silvery, slow moving – quite majestic – unlike any other fish. (And nothing like a fruit bat, cricket bat or any other kind of bat!)

 

Ornate Butterflyfish. In the family of Butterflyfish. (Scientific name: CHAETODONTIDAE). Taken at Cocos (Keeling) Islands by: diveplanit.com

Ornate Butterflyfish

Diagonal yellow bands on a silver body tinged with blue. Two black vertical bands on the face, one across the eye, blue patches. Quite a pretty face – even for a fish!