Clowning Around

Maldives Clown Fish 1

One of the most popular outfits yesterday, especially for the very little ones, was a clown costume. Now the British seem to think that all Halloween costumes need to be scary, but in American tradition (the culture which turned the holiday into a blockbuster event), really any sort of fancy dress is appropriate. Mind you, some people consider clowns to be pretty scary. Not the clown fish in the Maldives waters. In fact, they dress themselves up all year round in anemone attire in their symbiotic defence mechanism.

These anemone occupants may also appear to be masquerading as a famous Disney character as well, but regular readers of Maldives Complete will spot the differences.

Of all the seascape photoshoots, this underwater duo is probably the most popular. Both the host background and the sequestered Nemo cousins radiate with vibrant colour. Here is a collection of some of the back I have come across. An amphitheatre of Amphiprion fishionistas…

Maldives Clown Fish 12

Maldives Clown Fish 11

Maldives Clown Fish 10

Maldives Clown Fish 9

Maldives Clown Fish 8

Maldives Clown Fish 7

Maldives Clown Fish 2

Maldives Clown Fish 6

Maldives Clown Fish 5

Maldives Clown Fish 4

Maldives Clown Fish 3

Fish Souper

Fish school - Convict Tangs

Second helping of fish soup. Our very first impression of the Maldives was waiting on the airport arrival jetty for our transfer boat and marvelling at the legions of colourful tropical fish scurrying about in the crystal clear water below. While snorkelling, we regularly find ourselves amidst giant clouds of chordata scudding along the top of the coral reefs. Here are more of my favourite close ups of these tapestry-like images forming their own world-class underwater pelotons

  1. Convict Tangs [ABOVE]
  2. Glass Fish
    Fish school - glass fish
  3. Fusilier
    Fish school - Fusilier
  4. Blue Surgeonfish
    Fish school - Blue Surgeonfish
  5. Sprat
    Fish school - Sprat
  6. Moorish Idol
    Fish school - Moorish Idol
  7. Humpback Snapper
    Fish school - Humpback Snapper
  8. Bigeye
    Fish school - Bigeye

Coral King Tapestries

Caterina Fattori - anenome

A of rich and royal hue,
An everlasting vision of the ever-changing view
A wondrous woven magic in bits of blue and gold
A tapestry to feel and see, impossible to hold
   – Carole King’s ‘Tapestry’

Dive into the Laccadive Sea and you will be confronted with a living spectacle of vibrant colours and images. It’s tempting just to chase one exciting sight after another. But some of the most biggest displays are to be found in the smallest things. After you see your first Nudibranch, you will be slowing your swimming right down hoping to spot more of these alien slugs. Yesterday’s up close and personal interview with Outrigger Konotta marine biologist Caterina Fattori first stemmed from my admiration of her photographic up close and personal exposés of the coral critters literally make up all of the Maldives islands. To celebrate World Ocean’s Day today, I am featuring my top ten intimate polyp portraits from her stunning Instagram feed

  1. Mushroom Coral
    Caterina Fattori - mushroom coral
  2. Diploastrea
    Caterina Fattori - Diploastrea
  3. Octocorallia
    Caterina Fattori - octocorallia
  4. Maze Coral
    Caterina Fattori - maze coral
  5. Sarcophyton
    Caterina Fattori - Sarcophyton
  6. Daisy Coral
    Caterina Fattori - daisy coral
  7. Crinoid
    Caterina Fattori - crinoid
  8. Platygyra
    Caterina Fattori - Platygyra
  9. Bubble Coral
    Caterina Fattori - bubble coral
  10. Pachyseris
    Caterina Fattori - Pachyseris