This beautiful golden-hued pipefish, is either a bay pipefish (Syngnathus leptorhynchus) or a barred pipefish (Syngnathus auliscus). It is difficult to identify without being able to count its rings. These pencil-thin fish, up to 12 inches in length, are slow swimmers and rely on camouflage to escape predators. They are often found in eel grass beds hanging parallel to the eel grass strands. We have seen cormorants diving in the eel grass beds adjacent to the T-Pier sometimes coming up the the surface with a squirming pipefish in their mouth. This pipefish was partially hidden in a patch of red bryozoans, and was very patient while I snapped off more than 20 images of it from every angle. After all, a golden pipefish in bright red bryozoans, what could be more invisible?

                                                                                                                 Gary Powell

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