Some painters transform the sun into a yellow spot, others transform a yellow spot into the sun.

Pablo Picasso

Man, I’m getting old. I can’t believe it’s already been 200 years since Anselme Gaëtan Desmarest first scientifically described Haemulon flavolineatum. It seems like yesterday. The fancy Latin species name means yellow line. You’d think a French guy would use his native tongue and name it Poisson Jaunelingnium or something similar. But, perhaps it doesn’t matter since the ancient language challenged know it as the French Grunt anyway. So Anselme knew what he was doing after all.

His father, Nicholas, a geologist, proved to the world that basalt is of volcanic origin, disproving the conventional wisdom of the time that all rock originated from the sediments of ancient seas. But I digress. Our featured yellow fish can grow up to a foot long and swim in the warm waters of South Carolina, the coast of Brazil, and everything in between. They like to hang out in schools under ledges and elkhorn coral during the day. Then, when school is out at dusk, they split up and forage independently, carefully looking out for black grouper who find them tasty. If not enough, they can also fall prey to the occasional parasite, including Gnathia marleyi, named for Bob Marley. Nope, you can’t make this stuff up.

Published by billtan

Striving to be a better boat .

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