February on the Great Barrier Reef

It’s been a pretty good month so far here on the Great Barrier Reef! Photographer Chris has been making the most of the good visibility and has been snapping away at very photogenic sea life and tourists alike!

Blue Spotted Ray, WetRez Cameras, Cairns

The Blue Spotted Ray is a common site on the reef. It is found in the sandy bottom where it often buries itself in the sand, with only its eyes appearing above the surface of the sand. It is a bottom feeder so its mouth is perfectly designed to scoop up crab, shrimp and small fish. It mouth is also designed to crush its food rather than chew its food. The Blue Spotted Ray doesn’t get very large, usually they are about 30cm across the back. The eggs are found inside the mother until they hatch where she will then give birth to live rays called pups.

This photogenic  lionfish has been hanging around the same spot for a couple of days and was a perfect model when  posing with the many divers who came along to take a good look and even a snap or two of their own.

Diver with Lion Fish, WetRez Cameras, Cairns

The lionfish is a venomous fish with red and white zebra striped, long pectoral fins and a cantankerous demeanour saying ‘Don’t Touch Me!’ The venom of the lionfish is delivered through its 18 needle -like dorsal fins which is purely defensive. The sting is extremely painful to humans and can cause nausea and breathing difficulties. Lionfish are popular in some parts of the world as food, but are far more prized in the aquarium trade.

Thank you to Chris Banner for these wonderful photos.

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