Commended - Travel Photographer of the Year. December 2017
One Shot Category | Wildlife, Sea Life
Atop the stinging tentacles of a Pink-tipped anemone, a Spotted cleaner shrimp waits for some trade to stop by. These delicate, transparent crustaceans enjoy immunity from the defensive nematocyst barbs of their anemone host. The anemone swishes this way and that in the current while the tiny critter dances from one tentacle to the next. Waving their long antennae, the shrimp signals its presence to passing fish, which queue up to be cleaned.
With their distinct patterns of dots and circles, I wanted to not only show the beauty of both animals and their relationship with each other but also to spotlight the incredible art of crypsis. The tiny shrimp can make itself seem almost invisible to any threat of danger by merging effortlessly with its anemone.
Everything moves all the time when you're underwater, so waiting for each element to align took the better part of my dive… and a sprinkle of luck.
WIth over 20,000 entries, I'm completed stoked to be on the grid of the TPoTY awards!
Location: Bonaire, Leeward Antilles, Caribbean Sea
Photographer: Laura Storm