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Fangblenny in motion


Subject: The Piano Fangblenny (Plagiotremus tapeinosoma) is about 13 cm (5 inches) long and feeds on skin, mucus and scales of fish. It attacks its victims in a hit-and-run (or hit-and-swim ;-)) manner taking a bite from an unsuspecting target and retreating quickly back to safety. The most confident ones even try to take a nibble from an occasional diver… They are often associated with cleaner wrasses and found around cleaning stations to profit from the presence of customer fish that come close to be treated.

Technique: These fish are either hiding in their hole or darting out of it to take a bite from a passerby. I wanted to capture it in motion, but instead of opting for a really high shutter speed to freeze the fish, I chose to use a slow shutter speed (1/20) and move along with the camera to get a feel of the speed they use when they are swimming. The result is not a tack sharp image but the blur around the head and especially the tail do indicate that this fangblenny was swimming rapidly either to go and take a bite or to get back to the safety of its shelter.

All images Copyright 2020 Olivier Van den Broeck and Greet Meulepas for Beyond scuba. All rights reserved.