Volume 6    Number 2

Sleek Harlequin Bass Struts its Stuff
at Larry's Lair Reef, Bonaire

Sleek Harlequin Bass Struts its Stuff at Larry's Lair Reef, Bonaire

For some reason, the little Harlequin Bass is one of my favorite reef fish. Maybe it is because of all its fancy decorations. This adult Harlequin Bass was about 4 inches long. Its yellow and white body was covered with a fancy pattern of vertical bars and tiny dots.

Notice how hard it is to see the eyes of this Harlequin Bass. Some scientists believe that the distance between a fish's eyes gives away the size of its mouth, giving a clue to other fish whether or not to be afraid of being eaten. Then eye camouflage could help fish catch their prey by not giving away a signal that their prey should be afraid. Whatever the reason, many reef fish have some sort of eye camouflage.

I often see Harlequin Bass swimming above the sand near small coralheads in the shallows. A type of Seabass, the Harlequin Bass is related to other larger Seabass such as Groupers.

Read all about the island of Bonaire on the ReefNews website, at

ReefNews photographer Jonathan Dowell took this photo using a Canon 10D digital camera with a Canon 28-105 mm zoom lens in an Ikelite housing with an Ikelite strobe.



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