overunderwater  photos  by  Isabella  Effner
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Behavior Gallery

Frogfish Spawning

On the nights of the 1st and 12th of May 2005 in Bonaire, I witnessed two pairs of Frogfish spawning. On both occasions, the smaller male was close to the female and started pushing her egg swollen belly. The pairs rose 1 foot (30 cm) above the reef where, in a flash, spawning occurred. The couples then drifted back to the reef while the eggs, released in a roll, slowly unfolded into a raft in a graceful dance to the surface.  Tide, wind and current then decide the fate of the eggs. This experience was one of the most special moments in my life.

Frogfish Spawning May 1st 2005

1  2 3 4 5
6 7 8 9 10

  1   female 10 days before spawning
  2   female with eggs lures day and night time
  3   yawning female
  4   female & tiny male 2 days before spawning
  5   4 hours before spawning
  6   2 hours before spawning male to female's left
7+8  1 minute before spawning male pushes the
       females round belly full of eggs
  9   egg raft floats  to the surface
 10  egg raft on the surface

 11  female 8 days before spawning
 12  female swims away from male, if she is not ready
 13  1 hour before spawning
 14  1 second before female released her eggs
 15  egg raft floats to the surface

Frogfish Spawning May 12th 2005

11 12 13  14 15


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