5. Shrimps are for life, not just barbecues

Ambon Crinoid Shrimp

Shrimps are some of the tidiest critters around.  If they are not burrowing out neat networks of tunnels, they can be found tickling around the fearsome mouth of a Moray Eel cleaning its teeth or sweeping up around Sea Cucumber bottoms.   Dauin has more than it’s fair share of shrimp crackers, so here’s a few we’ve been lucky enough to see recently.


Emperor Shrimp (Periclemens imperator)

IMG_2319_ed_72_wmGorgeously coloured, with variations from orange to red and white, the Emperor Shrimp is a favourite with divers.  Spare a thought however for it’s unfortunate choice of home – usually around the bum-hole of Sea Cucumbers.  Somebody’s got to live there we suppose.


Donald Duck Shrimp (Leander plumosus)

IMG_3796_ed_72_wmNot kidding, this one really is called the Donald Duck Shrimp, after the flattened, upturned “beak” of its mouth appendages.  The hunt is now on for the Mickey Mouse-fish or the Goofy Boxcrab.  Actually, we just made those up.   (Or did we?)


Banded Tozuema Shrimp (Tozuema armatum)

IMG_3792_ed_72_wmAn example of a Broken-back Shrimp, where there is a pronounced hump in the back, the Tozuema Shrimp lives in the whispy arms of the sea fan.


Squat Shrimp (Thor amboinensis)

IMG_4217_ed_72wmAnother type of broken back shrimp, the Squat Shrimp is often called a Popcorn Shrimp, after the white blotches that resemble the fluffy white kernels of popped corn. A favourite with photographers, as they like to pose in anemones and being bright orange, are relatively easy to find for once!


Anker’s Whip Coral Shrimp (Pontonides ankeri)

IMG_4189_ed_72wmAnker’s Whip Coral Shrimps live a precarious existence, clinging to the long steps of whip corals, battered by strong currents and foraging on tiny passing plankton. As is common with these types of Commensal shrimp, they vary their colours and patterns to match the coral they live in.


Skeleton Shrimp (Caprella sp)

IMG_4332_ed_72wmNot really shrimp at all, but a species of Amphipod, never the less they may as well be shrimps, with their thin, translucent, jointed bodies, their large grasping claws and long antennae.  Looking fearsome in this close-up image, they are actually very entertaining, wriggling about frantically in the sand and gravel.

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