with its white overall coloration punctuated
with dark spots along its flanks.
Among the mollusks, you’ll find two
exceptional sand-stirring snails: the cerith
snails Cerithium spp. and nassarius snails
Nassarius spp. While nothing spectacular
to look at, these unassuming snails do
a great job of keeping the top layer of a
sandbed overturned as they tunnel around
in search of detritus, uneaten food, and
other edible bits.
The dot-dash goatfish Parupeneus barberinus dives for food in its sandbed hunting ground.
Offer frequent feedings of fresh and frozen so named for its rust-red anterior half and
seafoods of the meaty variety to supplement yellow posterior half. The spotted goatfish
prey items taken from the sandbed. Pseudupeneus maculatus, which hails from
One of the more popular of these the Tropical Western Atlantic, is another
fishes is the bicolor goatfish Parupeneus attractive species that you might come
barberinoides. This Indo-Pacific species is across. This fish is more subtly beautiful,
Cerith snails have a drably colored,
elongated spiral shell and reach
approximately 1½ inches in length. Also
chromatically unremarkable, nassarius
snails reach only about ½ inch in length and
occupy oval-shaped spiral shells. Another
distinguishing feature of the nassarius
snails is the long tube-like siphon that
extends from one end of their shells.
Sand-Sifting Sea Stars
The sand-sifting sea star Astropecten
platyacanthus is an excellent example of
a commonly sold “utility species” that
simply does its job too well. True to its