Swim-Thru Cleaning Service For Sea Turtles

AnimalTalesOfficialPublished: May 1, 201814 views
Published: May 1, 2018

These bright yellow fish offer sea turtles a swim-thru valet service - congregating to help clean the dirt from their shells.

The school of both yellow tangs and yellow-eyed kole tangs group together to form a ‘cleaning station’ in the colorful reef waiting for green turtles to come by for cleaning.

Once the green turtle arrives, the fish eat algae and parasites off the turtle, cleaning the shell while filling themselves up at the same time.

By cleaning the shell, it reduces water friction for the turtle making it easier to swim as well as improving the turtle’s health.

The symbiotic service was filmed in Puako Reef, off the Big Island in Hawaii, by wildlife and underwater photographer Deana Whittemore, 57, and her husband Aaron, 61.

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