About Us

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We work as ecotourism guides (as well as biologist and boat captain) often on the BC Coast, but also as far ranging as the Arctic and Antarctic. We have an insatiable curiousity for the planet; all its hidden gems and what makes them tick. That and our love of sailing is what inspired us to sail around the Pacific in Narama, our tough and pretty little sailboat.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Suwarrow (Suvarov), Northern Cook Islands – Fish Species List

Manta - check out the cephalic fins!! (near the mouth)

After three months in French Polynesia our fish ID skills are improving. So we thought we would share a list of fish species for Suwarrow.  This in not a complete list as there’s always those that you don’t see well enough to ID, or you can’t remember everything that you see while snorkeling and our field guides don’t always have everything for this area.  This list does illustrate the wonderful diversity of species on the reef.  The ones marked with (*) were delicious!

Unidentified Dascyllus - any ideas out there??

Threadfin Butterflyfish
Chaetodon auriga
Redfin Butterflyfish
Chaetodon lunulatus
Teardrop Butterflyfish
Chaetodon unimaculatus
Raccoon Butterflyfish
Chaetodon lunula
Dotted Butterflyfish
Chaetodon semeion
Reticulated Butterflyfish
Chaetodon reticulatus
Speckled Butterflyfish
Chaetodon citrinellus
Saddled Butterflyfish
Chaetodon ephippium
Dot-and-Dash Butterflyfish
Chaetodon pelewensis
Pacific Double-Saddle Butterflyfish
Chaetodon ulietensis
Fourspot Butterflyfish
Chaetodon quadrimaculatus
Ornate Butterflyfish
Chaetodon ornatissimus
Pennant Bannerflyfish
Heniochus chrysostomus
Longnose Butterflyfish
Forcipiger flavissimus
Lemonpeel Angelfish
Centropyge flavissimus
Regal Angelfish
Pygoplites diacanthus
Orangeband Surgeonfish
Acanthurus olivaceus
Achilles Tang
Acanthurus achilles
Convict Surgeonfish
Acanthurus triosegus
Whitecheek Surgeonfish
Acanthurus nigricans
Pacific Sailfin Tang
Zebrasoma veliferum
Bluespine Unicornfish
Naso unicornis
Spotted Unicornfish
Naso brevirostris
Orangespine Unicornfish
Naso lituratus
Moorish Idol
Zanclus cornatus
Humbug Dascyllus
Dascyllus aruanus
Blue-green Chromis
Chromis viridis
Pacific Half-and-half Chromis
Chromis iomelas
Onespot Snapper
Lutjanus monostigma
Blue Damsel
Pomacentrus pavo
Black Snapper
Macolor niger
Bluefin Trevally
Caranx melampygus
Rainbow Runner
Elagatis bipinnulatus
Peacock Grouper
Cephalopholis argus
Coral Grouper*
Cephalopholis miniata
Greasy Grouper*
Epinephelus tauvina
Camouflage Grouper
Epinephelus polyphekadion
Arc-Eye Hawkfish
Paracirrhites arcatus
Bullethead Parrotfish
Chlorurus sordidus
Steephead Parrotfish
Chlorurus microrhinos
Bicolor Parrotfish
Cetoscarus bicolor
Pacific Longnose Parrotfish*
Hipposcarus longiceps
Red-breasted Wrasse
Cheilinus fasciatus
Bird Wrasse
Gomphosus varius
Sixbar Wrasse
Thalassoma hardwicke
Threespot Wrasse
Halichoeres trimaculatus
Checkerboard Wrasse
Halichoeres hortulanus
Redlip Cleaner Wrasse
Labroides rubrolabiatus
Bluestreak Cleaner Wrasse
Labroides dimidiatus
Bicolor Cleaner Wrasse
Labroides bicolor
Big-scale Soldierfish
Myripristis berndti
Spotfin Squirrelfish
Neoniphon sammara
Twotone Dartfish
Ptereleotris evides
Goldsaddle Goatfish
Parupeneus cyclostomus
Manybar Goatfish
Parupeneus multifascialis
Aulostromus chinensis
Fistularia commersonii
Orange-lined Triggerfish
Balistapus undulatus
Picasso Triggerfish
Rhinecanthus aculeatus
Indian Toby
Canthigaster solandri
Mahi Mahi*
Coryphaena hippurus
Gray Reef Shark
Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos
Blacktip Reef Shark
Carcharhinus melanopterus
Whitetip Reef Shark
Triaendon obesus
Giant Manta
Manta birostris
Arc-Eye Hawkfish

Dot-and-Dash Butterflyfish


Nick said...

Suwarrow the magic place. Not long before you need to get to safer anchorage. I enjoy hearing about your adventures and reliving my own through you.

Good sailing

Nick Fenger

Daniel Marsh said...

I would love to visit Suwarrow someday. I've just completed my third trip to the Cook Islands. So far I've been to Rarotonga, Aitutaki and Mangaia. On my most recent trip completed just a few weeks ago, I stumbled across the grave of Tom Neale, who lived alone on Suwarrow for some 16 years off-and-on.

On each of my trips to the Cooks, I've snorkeled once or twice a day, usually for 2 hours in the morning and 2-2.5 hours right up until sundown. I've only seen this particular Dascyllus once, so it must be quite rare, at least on Rarotonga. It was all by itself huddled quite close to a different branching coral. According to the Cook Islands Biodiversity database, this one is the juvenile form of Dascyllus reticulatus. The black and white "Humbug" variety is quite common.

I've posted the URL of my most recent Raro snorkeling gallery, which includes a photo of this fish.