Portrait of an Alien

Portrait of an Alien

People have not been very original when naming this species. Nor have they been very consistent either. Because this shrimp has long, thin arms ending in red claws it has been named: Thin-arm Shrimp, Long-arm Shrimp and Red-scissor Commensal Shrimp. Since most of its body is completely see-trough it is also known as Ghost Shrimp, Glass Shrimp, Transparent Commensal Shrimp and Invisible Shrimp. Even the scientific name it is not entirely unequivocal. Is it Cuapetes or Periclimenes tenuipes?
Anyway, I do not think this mother-to-be has any sleepless nights over how she is called; she has obviously more important things on her mind right now, like protecting the eggs she is carrying….
Cuapetes (or Periclimenes) tenuipes individuals are free-living on sandy bottoms or in holes. Sometimes they are found on sea anemones and sponges. Presumably looking for food as they feed on parasites, algae and plankton.
Apparently they sometimes live together with mantis shrimps as well as these predators are found sharing their hole with one of these tiny aliens.

Capturing a Marbled shrimp!

Capturing a Marbled shrimp!

This is a picture of a Saron shrimp (Saron sp., family: Marble shrimps ; Hippolytidae). It is not my best photo ever; nevertheless I am pleased with it! I spend a whole dive on attempting to capture this beauty and this was my last attempt! It fills the frame, the colours are there and it is sharp. Considering the less than ideal placement of my topic I am pleased with the result!
We found this species during the day, hiding in a crevice, barely visible. Still, I wanted to give it a go since it was the most interesting animal I had seen thus far during this dive. To do so I had to break off one of my external strobes and lay it on the sand. Luckily a sandy bottom surrounded the rocks my subject was hiding in between. But… on this sandy bottom was one little bushy hydroid colony, exactly where I needed to be to be able to see my screen, let alone the shrimp.
I ended up with a rash on my hand from the focusing… and a rash on my ear from the peeking at my screen – and I can tell you: after a while it starts to burn – but also with a full frame picture of this Saron.