Synchiropus splendidus

The Mandarinfish is a small fish of the dragonet family, growing to only about 6 cm long. It is usually found living among green, blue or orange corals. Despite its brilliant and gaudy colouration it is remarkably difficult to see, blending into the coral background perfectly using its body patterning as colour disruption. Mandarinfish are also highly territorial and the males are able to display to females and rival males by raising a spectacular enlarged dorsal fin. They curiously hop, crawl and dart in short bursts among the coral branches.

Found in tropical waters of the western Pacific.

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