Animals Video
cleaner fish

By Ellie Duncombe


There is some fishy about this dental work.

This diver was 100ft below the surface when two cleaner fish began nibbling his lips and looking for food.

PIC FROM Caters News

Rather than bat them away, he removes his regulator and lets the cleaner wrasses clear the inside of his mouth.

The video was taken by Russian professional diver Vitaly Bazarov off the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt.

Vitaly said: “I was a diving with my friends at the world-famous Blue Hole in Dahab.

PIC FROM Caters News

“At a depth of nearly 100ft the cleaner fish approached me and started biting my lips. I knew they were trying to find food.

“I removed the regulator from the mouth and the cleaners swam in, so I quickly turned my camera on to make a video.

“It was really funny because they are like living toothbrushes, although they can be a little rough.”

The cleaner fish mostly help other fish by removing dead skin and ectoparasites from their mouths.

Vitaly said: “It’s an ecological interaction that favours both parties involved.

“These small fish maintain so-called cleaning stations where other fish, known as hosts, congregate and perform specific movements to attract the attention of the cleaner fish.

“Remarkably, these small cleaner fish safely clean large predatory fish that would otherwise eat small fish such as these.

“Cleaner fish advertise their services with conspicuous coloration, often displaying a brilliant blue stripe that spans the length of the body.”