A Hawksbill Sea Turtle feeds on algae while French Angelfish and wrasses compete for scraps that the turtle dislodges. Taken in Cozumel, Mexico.
The state fish of California, the Garibaldi is protected in in all Californian waters, allowing it to flourish to the abundance present today. Designated "Least concern," the Garibaldi is everywhere around Catalina Island, where this photo was taken.
A young male whale shark in Cabo Pulmo National Park, Baja California Sur, Mexico.
A spotted eagle ray and a gray angel fish share a plane on a wreck dive off of Isla Mujeres, Mexico. These were two of the largest creatures that I'd seen around Isla Mujeres, a sign of the benefits of the marine park that had allowed the ecosystem to recover.
A Longsnout Seahorse (Hippocampus reidi) in shallow seagrass waters off of the Smithsonian Tropical Research institute in Bocas Del Toro, Panama.
The sun pierces the clear, fresh water of the Dos Ojos Cenotes in Mexico.
A diver watches porkfish and blue striped Grunts school in Puerto Morelos, Mexico. Puerto Morelos has a large Marine Park around the barrier reef that protects its coast, which has allowed for populations of schooling fish and other reef creatures to flourish.
A french angelfish parts a school of French Grunts off the coast of Isla Mujeres.
Spotted Moray Eel
A sign of a healthy reef, a curious spotted moray eel pokes out of his hole in a coral head in Puerto Morelos, Mexico.
Blue Striped Grunt
A blue striped grunt in Isla Mujeres, Mexico.
A Juvenile Great Barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda) takes refuge among mangrove roots that provide it protection from larger predators as well as plentiful food.
Whale shark and Porkfish
A school of porkfish swim between me and a young male whale shark in Cabo Pulmo National Park, Baja California Sur, Mexico.
Lion's Mane Jellyfish
A Bi-colored nudibranch (Janolus fuscus) on the dock at Friday Harbor Labs
Divers wait to enter a wreck near Isla Mujeres, Mexico. This ship was sunk in order to create an artificial reef. Fish flock to these types of reefs, and wrecks often have extremely high levels of life in, on, and around them.
Kelp bass are native to the west coast of the US, stretching all the way up to Washington. This one is in Catalina Island, California. Kelp bass have been known to bite people, and can break skin.
Pederson Cleaner Shrimp
A strikingly blue and transparent cleaner shrimp (Ancylomenes pedersoni) sits on a Giant Anemone in Bocas Del Toro, Panama.
Great Barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda) lurk menacingly in open water off a wall reef in Cozumel, Mexico.
These Flabellina verrucosa nudibranchs were gathering in large numbers in April of 2016 in Nahant, MA. They were most likely mating, as many egg cases could be seen around during this time. F. verrucosa have the ability to steal stinging cells from anemones or jellyfish, giving them a defense from predators.
Lion fish are an invasive species in the Atlantic; their native range includes the Pacific and Indian oceans. These fish are highly venomous and have no natural predators in the Atlantic ocean. They are therefore spreading like wildfire as far north as Delaware, and as far south as Venezuela. This one was found in Isla Mujeres, Mexico.
A Dendronotus iris nudibranch swimming in the water column in Monterey, California.
California Golden Gorgonian
A colonial organism formed of polyps that feed on plankton in Catalina Island, California.
A Red Sea Urchin (Mesocentrotus franciscanus) off of San Juan Island, WA. Tube feet are easily seen in this photograph, which allow the urchin to move as well as manipulate its food.
A species of Sculpin off of Friday Harbor Labs in Friday Harbor, WA.
A Goldentail Moray eel (Gymnothorax miliaris) hides inside coral in Cozumel, Mexico.
A Yellow-lined Arrow Crab (Stenorhynchus seticornis) sits on two Rough Fileclams behind a Corkscrew Anemone in Bocas Del Toro, Panama
Waiting to mate
Two Barred Hamlets (Hypoplectrus puella) pause between mating at night in Bocas Del Toro, Panama. For more on this, check out this page.
Acanthemblemaria aspera hides in Brain Coral.
Snapper and Jacks
Cabo Pulmo National Park is home to an incredible amount of biomass and biodiversity, having recovered from overfishing to being a Mission Blue Hope Spot and one of the top diving sites in the world.