Tiger grouper being cleaned

Tiger grouper being cleaned

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Credit: CHARLES ANGELO/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Tiger grouper (Mycteroperca tigris) having the inside of its mouth cleaned by a cleaner goby (Gobiosoma genie; blue, black and yellow). This is an example of symbiosis, two organisms deriving mutual benefit from an action. The grouper has its mouth cleaned of parasites, which form a meal for the goby. These fish inhabit the tropical waters of the western Atlantic Ocean, including the Caribbean Sea. The tiger grouper is a voracious predator of smaller fish, which it catches from ambush. It may reach a metre in length. The goby, which would be eaten if not for the colouration that indicates it is a cleaner, does not exceed five centimetres in length.

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Keywords: animal, atlantic, bony fish, cleaner, cleaning, co-operation, feeding, gobiosoma genie, goby, grouper, horizontal, marine, mouth, mutualism, mycteroperca tigris, nature, ocean, pisces, sea, symbiosis, symbiotic, tiger, tropical, underwater, wildlife, zoology

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