False jacopever swimming about.
And the same fish hiding.
A much less skittish specimen (if it is the same species), in Puerto Madryn, Valdez Peninsula, Argentina.
Another one, also Argentina
And a third, also Argentina
All photos Guido Zsilavecz
|False jacopever Sebastes capensis at Star Walls.
This fish is not uncommon, but it tends to ocurr in waters deeper than 20m, and given the few times I've seen it, is very skittish and disappears into crevices very quickly. On a dive at Star Walls I finally managed to photograph what looked like a fully grown specimen of about 40cm length.
The species is known from Cape Town to Saldanha Bay and a few outlying islands, but possibly off southern and western South America as well. During dives I did off Puerty Madryn, which lies as the base of the magnificent Valdez Peninsula in Argentina, I saw many of them - if they are the same species. There their behaviour was very different, in that they would not hide at the first sighting of a diver. Admitedly, the reef structure did not allow for much hiding there, but even then, the fish were quite approachable. They were also quite a bit smaller than the one seen at Star Walls.
Smiths' Sea Fishes, MM Smith and PC Heemstra, 1986.
A guide to the common Sea Fishes of Southern Africa, R vd Elst, 1990