Pantar, Indonesia (May 2014) ~ I just saw a blenny that I don’t recognize and you have to go back to see it. Ned nodded in assent, barely looking up from his laptop. Our liveaboard dive boat, the Dewi Nusantara, was scheduled to remain in this bay for one more day, so I had the evening to pursuade Ned to return to the dive site the next morning instead of exploring another spot. And we had to go back – … Read more Oh Blenny! (We struck Gold)
Meet Malacoctenus carrowi, a newly described blenny known from the Cape Verde Islands in the eastern Atlantic. A year ago, we announced a Blenny Auction to raise funding to enable Dr. Peter Wirtz to collect another specimen and complete the research to formalize the description of the fish, only the second species of the genus Malacoctenus to be known from the eastern Atlantic. As a result, the species has been named to honor Mr. Frank Carrow, whose interest in marine … Read more Blenny Auction Result
November, 2014 ~ If you have a photo of a blenny labeled Secretary Blenny, Acanthemblemaria maria, it is likely that you actually have a photo of a Spinyhead Blenny, Acanthemblemaria spinosa. A Google image search for “secretary blenny” produces pages and pages of images that are actually, with an occasional exception, Spinyhead Blennies. I have intimate knowledge of this problem — it has been wrong in Reef Fish Identification – Florida Caribbean Bahamas since the second edition (1994) and just sorted … Read more The Real Secretary Blenny
This is the most photographed Tessellated Blenny in the world and likely the most observed. I am certain of this. I spent hours with this fish and its reefmates – I think I might have been obsessed. A few days after we arrived on Bonaire for our annual 5-week stay, our friends Allison and Carlos Estape (fellow fish surveyors) stopped by and told us about a site that had Tessellated Blennies (Hypsoblennius invemar) living in the barnacle shells. An abandoned, submerged mooring … Read more The Most Photographed Tessellated Blenny in the World
Team Blenny is on the job in Bonaire – check out the results of last year’s hunt on our newly created Bonaire Blenny Page. There are photos and hand-drawn maps with info about where we found them last year. “Like” us on our Blennywatcher Facebook page for updates about our 2014 finds. Bonaire is a super place for fishwatching because so many different habitats are accessible as shore dives, giving divers the freedom to dive wherever (well, almost), whenever and … Read more Team Blenny
We’re heading to Bonaire soon and that means blenny hunting! In Ned’s photographs, enlarged on a computer screen, the differences between the Orangespotted Blenny, Hypleurochilus springeri and the Tessellated Blenny, Hypsoblennius invemar are obvious but unmagnified they looked very similar. Both can be found in the same habitat: empty barnacle shells or other small holes on dock pilings and always shallow, where even the gentlest surge makes it almost impossible to lock in and really get a good, long look … Read more Differences: Orangespotted vs. Tessellated Blenny
This is why they are called Fangblennies! Dr. William Smith-Vaniz’s 1976 monograph, The Saber-toothed Blennies, Tribe Nemophini, was a must-read when we started diving in the Indo-Pacific many years ago, but it was the cover of his publication (see below) showing the recurved canine teeth of the lower jaw, that turned these cute little reef fish into the stuff of nightmares and inspired my quest to see them for myself. Saber-toothed, a.k.a., fangblennies, with the exception of one species in … Read more Fangs!
Place the winning bid and the right to name this lovely blenny is yours. We are talking about the one-of-a-kind Latinized scientific name; the one by which this fish shall officially be known. Discovered in the Cape Verde Islands and identified as an undescribed species by Dr. Peter Wirtz, the blenny belongs to the genus Malacoctenus, of which only one species was known to live in the Eastern Atlantic. Dr. Wirtz is preparing the formal scientific description but must obtain … Read more Blenny Auction!
Lucayablennius zingaro. When I first learned the scientific name of the odd little Arrow Blenny my curiosity was piqued. Ned and I were living in Bimini at the time so Lucaya, as in Lucayans, the first inhabitants of the Bahamas, was a familiar term, but I had to look zingaro up in the dictionary. It is Italian for Gypsy and we liked the sound of it and joked if we had another son we would name him Zingaro DeLoach and … Read more Zingaro