Alex Mustard - Angel Heart
A pair of rock beauty angelfish spawning at dusk (on Monday) in the Caribbean Sea. Rock beauties live in small harems, with a larger male and 2-4 females. Courtship lasts for about 30 minutes each evening, with the male visiting each female and generally showing off, as the females hydrate their eggs, visible as their bellies swelling, in preparation for spawning. Most reef fish try and spawn their eggs a little bit above the reef to avoid the eggs being eaten instantly. So the rock beauties have a short circling dance and then go into a spawning rise with the male nuzzling the abdomen of the female until she releases her eggs and he fertilises them.
Location: Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
Tags: Alex Mustard, Cayman Islands, Holacanthus tricolor, reproduction, rock beauty angelfish, underwater