The little teardrop butterfly was playing peek-a-boo with me. It would peek out, the strobe would fire, it would dart back into the coral. Repeat cycle…

This little fish had good reason to be shy, it is a favorite of the aquarium collectors.

Teardrop Butterflyfish
Teardrop butterflyfish (Chaetodon unimaculatus) peeks out from under cover

Postcard from the Reef – Night Colors

Many reef fish change color for the night. Many lose their bright daytime colors to become rather drab, most likely in order to evade the predators who scour the reef at night. Moray eels, reef sharks, and more are on the hunt, looking for the fish hiding in the nooks and crannies of the reef. For the diver a nighttime reef it totally different, the clouds of fish hovering over the coral are gone. Here and there a few fish are visible, the color seemingly drained from them as they wait out the night.

Longnose Butterflyfish
A longnose butterflyfish (Forcipiger flavissimus) in nighttime coloration during a night dive at Puakō