The Ribbon Eel (Rhinomuraena quaesita) is one of the more attractive Morays and commonly found in the Lembeh Strait. Due to its elegant shape, strong colours and predictable movements it is also a very popular photo subject. Ribbon Eels are almost always found living in sand holes – even though they can sometimes be seen free swimming in a ribbon-like shape. But usually you will only see their heads and upper body. If small fish are around (on which the Ribbon Eel tries to feed) up to 1m of the body can be visible. Adult females can grow up to 120cm in length.
Talking of sex: Ribbon eels are protandrous hermaphrodites. This means that males can turn into females. The sex and age of a Ribbon Eel can be easily determined by looking at their colouration: Juveniles are smaller and black with a yellow stripe on their back while Males are blue with a yellow line and females are Yellow.
Ribbon Eels are mostly found in rubbly sand or in fine sand near rubble patches and can be seen on almost all Dive Sites in Lembeh Strait. A 100mm or 60mm Macro Lens is ideal to shoot them. Straight on shots or half profiles work better than profiles. The Key to a nice shot is to time the moment when the mouth is open. I personally prefer to shoot Ribbon Eels vertical as i find it easier to fill the frame this way.