Ho'okele Staff | Sep 07, 2012
Identify a fish by borrowing from your nearest library John Randall’s “Shore Fishes of Hawaii” or John Hoover’s “Hawaii’s Fishes, A Guide for Snorkelers and Divers.”
Snorkeling to see pretty tropical fish in the wild, rather than in a confined aquarium, provides a simple joy. But being able to identify Hawaii’s fish by name enhances the experience as well as the answer to the question, “So, what did you see?”
The Hawaiian sergeant or mamo is so named because of the four vertical black bars across its body. Parrotfish wear bright colors as do some wrasses. Butterfly fish seem to be everyone’s favorite given their bright yellow and black markings.
Why Moorish idols are given that name is a mystery but their graceful long head pennant and elegant nose merit their description by ichthyologists, those who study fish, as the classic fish of the coral reef. A visit to the Waikiki Aquarium is the non-swimmer’s alternative. For more about Hawaii’s fish, see http://www.marinelifephotography.com/fishes/fishes.htm
(Information submitted by Rebecca Hommon Navy Region Hawaii environmental counsel.)
Category: Life & Leisure