Like its sub-Saharan namesake, this lionfish (Pterois volitans) is a predator, one that uses stealth and sudden bursts of speed to capture prey.
This photograph is from a site called Suzie’s Bommie, near Port Moresby, the capitol of Papua New Guinea. Visibility at this site is usually not as clear as pictured here, as the waters are rich with nutrients, which accounts for the profusion of life.
On this day, the water was clear. It was sunny. Fish were out and about, as if basking in the idyllic conditions.
Eager to snatch anything that strayed too far from cover, a dozen or more of these aquatic predators patrolled the edge of the reef, outlines of their bodies broken up by their elongated fins and striped patterns.
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