Deep Red

Todd GardnerBy Todd Gardner 4 years ago
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Bigeye, Priacanthus arenatus. This specimen was found drifting in Sargassum weed.

Bigeye, Priacanthus arenatus. This specimen was found drifting in Sargassum weed.

 Red coloration and large eyes are typical of deep-water fishes. In the Atlantic, bigeyes of the family Priacanthidae are associated with benthic habitats of the continental shelf, often in water deeper than 100 meters. Although we often find members of this family and other deep-water species among the tropical strays that make it into Long Island waters, this specimen was found off-shore, hiding in a piece of Sargassum weed. Unlike many of the other animals that are associated with Sargassum communities, the bigeyes’ coloration don’t afford them much protection in the way of camouflage.   
Short bigeyes, Pristigenys alta, a deep-water species that often associates with Sargassum weed and other flotsam as a small juvenile.

Short bigeyes, Pristigenys alta, a deep-water species that often associates with Sargassum weed and other flotsam as a small juvenile.

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  Fish, Science
Todd Gardner
About

 Todd Gardner

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Todd Gardner is a professor of marine biology at Suffolk County Community College in Riverhead, NY. His life and his career have both been shaped by his passion for marine life and he has written numerous scientific and popular articles about his research and experiences collecting, keeping, and culturing marine organisms. Todd’s professional background includes work on a National Geographic documentary, commercial aquaculture at C-quest Hatchery in Puerto Rico, and an 11-year term at the Long Island Aquarium where he spent much of his time developing techniques for rearing marine fish larvae. To date he has raised more than 50 species. In 2013 Todd received the prestigious Aquarist of the Year Award from the Marine Aquarium Society of North America (MASNA). In his spare time, Todd dives, photographs marine life, runs marathons, and plays in a blues band.

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