Riding the current with bannerfishes

Current dive

Longfish bannerfish cruise headlong into a moderate current. This way bits of food come to them and they essentially hover above the reef. I’m attempting the same, though I’m not streamlined like a fish and tire a bit quicker.

This dive was also one of my first dives leading a large group. I had seven other divers (though one was an instructor) following me on the Wall.

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Hold still dammit!

An impossible request for the longfin bannerfish

South Button denizens.

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The fish that helped Nemo?

What're you looking at shark bait?

I was at an aquarium ten days ago. As a divemaster and budding conservationist, I feel sad when I see animals in pens. At the same time, I recognize the greater good and love watching people — in particular small children — get excited by things they may never otherwise experience.

Which is why I got such a kick out of hearing a little girl at the aquarium describe a pennant coralfish, as “the fish that helped Nemo” to her mother.

Mom didn’t get it and gave her daughter a quizzical look; I kneeled down, tried not be creepy and engaged the six-year-old.

I explained that the fish in the tank were also called longfin bannerfish and rarely do you see them alone and sometimes they school by the dozens. Then I explained about scuba diving and how cool the ocean is.

Thankfully, Mom didn’t accuse me of trying to steal her daughter.

For the record, I believe Gill (of Pixar fame) technically was a moorish idol, a very similar looking fish.

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