Reef fish get riled when intruders glow red

Male fairy wrasses get feisty when a rival fluoresces

By Susan Milius, 13:56 PM May 29, 2014

Even in the blue underwater realm, fish can see red in more ways than one. Reef fish that see glowing red patches on a rival aggressively bite and put on extra threatening displays, researchers say.

Red wavelengths from sunshine can’t penetrate water much deeper than 10 or 20 meters, failing to reach far into the realm where more than 40 small Cirrhilabrus fish species called fairy wrasses dart along reefs. But shorter, bluer wavelengths can plunge deep, where they are absorbed by the scales a...

Source URL: https://www.sciencenews.org/article/reef-fish-get-riled-when-intruders-glow-red?mode=magazine&context=187953