Tuesday, October 2, 2007


This damselfish is commonly called a "Humbug".
It is aggresive & should be kept with more agressive fish. It can take care of itself, but can antagonize more peaceful fish.
In the header, a Turbina leads the pack. The others behind it are different Zoas.
Today as shown on Planet Earth, I found a clam shell.
In one of the images, I included a soda can for scale.
It took me almost an hour to dig it out of the dirt & vegetation.
I was walking in an overgrown yard, when I glimpsed the unmistakeable convolutions of a clam from the Indio Pacific coral reefs. At first glance & even upon closer inspection, I still had no clue of it`s size , nor did I imagine it would be all there.
At least a beautiful half anyway.
So, good luck on your treasure hunts & you may find a heart.


AndiF said...

That fish seems to have an intense awareness of itself, its surroundings, and you.

I love the way you shot the clamshell -- heightening its lovely, lovely edges.

Beth said...

That shell is HUGE, head. When you find shells, YOU FIND SHELLS. Your pictures are amazing. And I'm learning a lot from your descriptions. Thanks for sharing your passion.

Nancy P said...

Aphrodite could bathe in that.

Knucklehead said...

All my fish know exactly who I am, it seems. They react very differently when others approach the tank.
They delegate one to get my attention when they want food & are tuned into the time of day also. I have a huge crab(1 1/2") that even though I can never find him all day, is there at 7:PM when I feed. He jumps up & grabs the baster I use to feed, & hangs on till I empty the baster.
The Clam shell was a total chore to get up to where I could shoot it properly. It`s really the largest one I`ve ever seen.

Knucklehead said...

Luckily, I didn`t find the other half of the bi-valve. I could never have moved it. It was strange how I even got to see it. It`s almost like it wanted me to reveal it to others.
There was such a small part of it showing through the undergrowth & overgrowth,
It was not ready to give up easily though. At first I thought it must have been cemented in somehow, but once I cleared more vines & dirt away, I realized
it`s weight was it`s anchor.
I used to be much more technical in my descriptions of my fish & their habits, but I`m very busy with a bunch of projects right now that I just don`t have the proper time. Soon I`ll be able to do a better job of spreading my limited knowledge of the animals in my charge.
Have a sweet beach day.

Knucklehead said...

Nancy P.
I`ll run the water.
The shell must weigh 100 lbs, at least.
I have razorlike cuts on my hands from moving it, but for Aphrodite, what`s a little blood.
Enjoy the day.

olivia said...

Humbug has beautiful colouring ... and that iridescence you've captured. A beautiful fish. The name Humbug just doesn't seem appropriate ... ;-)

That Aphrodite must have thick skin ... :-)

(Agree w/ Andi on the great shots of the clam shell.)

NDD said...

re: clam shell;

I didn't know they made 10 ml Coke cans;)

How about a measurement across the the dia of that shell, I'm guessing 24"

That's huge!

Knucklehead said...

Dascyllus melanurus (Bleeker, 1854) is sometimes called a "humbug", something I learned last year. Although I`ve had these for much longer.
A magazine editor emailed me for permission to use images of "my humbugs"in "Reefkeeping", an online mag.
I hads to tell him I didn`t know what he was talking about & had him email me a link to my own images.
I, like you, dont think they are aptly named.
Here`s a link:

Knucklehead said...

I`d say you`re off by 50% but I`ll measure it tomorrow.
I drank 67 of those 10 ml cokes but switched to regular ones.
The day before I found the clam shell I also found some bottles of coke from many years ago. The smallest classic cokes. I drank one in a gulp, and was surprised by how fast it was gone. hah.