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Belize > Pictures and travelogues > Belize underwater

Pictures from Belize underwater: Great Barracuda, Gray Angelfish, and Southern Stingray from the South Water Caye Marine Reserve.

Belize underwater: Great Barracuda
Belize underwater: Great Barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda) from the South Water Caye Marine Reserve.

The great barracuda, also known as the giant barracuda,  is a type of ray-finned fish. It is a lean and powerful fish that can grow up to 198 cm (6.5 feet) long. 

Great barracudas are top predators and feeds on a variety of fishes, cephalopods and occasionally shrimps. They may speed up to 43 km/h (27 mph) in pursuit of fish to shred and devour with their razor-sharp teeth. They are curious and very rarely attack humans.

They occur in nearshore coral reefs, seagrasses, and mangroves. They may also reside in the open ocean, living predominantly at or near the surface.

South Water Caye Marine Reserve is the largest marine reserve in the Stann Creek district in the south east region of Belize. It is part of the Belize Barrier Reef.
 
The  Belize Barrier Reef is a 300 km (190 mi) long section of the 900 km (560 mi) long Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System, which is continuous from Cancún through the Riviera Maya up to Honduras. It includes seven marine reserves (e.g. South Water Caye Marine Reserve, Great Blue Hole, and Hol Chan Marine Reserve), 450 cays (such as Ambergris Caye, Caye Chapel, and Caye Caulker), and three atolls. It has been designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

Belize underwater: Gray Angelfish
Belize underwater: Gray Angelfish (Pomacanthus arcuatus) from the South Water Caye Marine Reserve in Belize.

The gray angelfish is a large angelfish, usually found among coral reefs at depths ranging from 2 to 30 m (7-98 feet). It belongs to the family Pomacanthidae. It has a thin body with a small mouth and may reach a length of 60 cm (24 in).

Gray angelfish is an omnivore feeding primarily on sponges. Large fishes are potential predators of the gray angelfish. Coral reefs provide plenty of covers for the angelfish to hide from predators.
 
There are many species of angelfish throughout the world, including the Queen Angelfish (Halocanthus ciliaris) and French Angelfish (Pomacanthus Paru).

Southern Stingray - Diving Belize
Diving Belize: a Southern Stingray (Dasyatis americana) in the South Water Caye Marine Reserve.

Graceful stingrays have roamed the oceans for more than 100 million years. They are related to sharks, and, like their shark cousins, they do not have bones. Their bodies are supported by cartilage. Stingrays can grow to be up to 2 meters (6.5 feet) long and weigh up to 358 kilograms (790 pounds). There are more than 60 species of stingrays. 

Southern stingray is a species of the family Whiptail Stingrays. It is an opportunistic forager, feeding on small crustaceans such as clams, oysters, shrimps, crabs, and mussels. It is adapted for life on the sea bed.
It spends most of the time lying partially buried on the ocean floor hiding from predators, like sharks, or waiting for prey to swim by.
  
Southern stingrays are not aggressive animals. They can defend themself with a sharp spine at the base of the tail. 

See also
--
Manta Ray
-- underwater pictures from all parts of the world.


 

Links

Wildlife Photographer - Planetstillalive.com
Find here more pictures of the wildlife photographer Marie-France Grenouillet, including great pictures from underwater life (South Water Caye), fauna, and other attractions in Belize and many other tourist destinations in the world.

See also

Belize > Pictures and travelogues > Bird watching in Belize
Belize > Pictures and travelogues > Maya temple in Belize

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