Lembeh is never boring. There is always something to see and the abundance of critters is absolutely stunning. But it is for sure a very special moment when you see something, that you have never seen before. Like the Braun’s Pughead Pipefish (Bulbonaricus brauni), which I have been looking for since a long time. This week i finally managed to find a couple of them.
The Braun’s Pughead Pipefish is a very cryptic species that lives hidden in between the branches of hardcorals. The white spot on its head seems to mimic the end of a polyp and makes it blend in perfectly. The bright red colour is only visibly with artifical light … with natural light the Braun’s Pughead Pipefish looks dark brown and is almost invisible in the shade of the coral branches. So to find one you have to do what you have to do for a lot of cool critters: You must go in full on fish geek mode and screen the hard corals one by one … hard work, but very rewarding if you get lucky.