A dominant male (blue spot on the dorsal) fights others away from the freshly shucked clam in our piling exhibit
Feather blennies are named for the two cirri or "feathers" over their eyes
Striped blennies often lay on their sides inside seashells
There are a few other species of blennies occasionally found in Virginia, but the most common by far are the feather blenny Hypsoblennius hentz, and the striped blenny Chasmodes bosquianus. Though these two are related, the striped blenny is a much less aggressive species and therefore easier to house in an exhibit with other species. They often are found in proximity to each other and a host of other species as well.
Naked gobies can often be found with blennies among oyster shells
Oyster reefs and grass beds are important habitat for a huge variety of similar fish species such as the naked goby, skilletfish (above - pictured stuck on the acrylic with a "suction cup" on its belly) and the much maligned oyster toadfish (a pile of them pictured below)
Innumerable crabs and shrimps also hide in the nooks and crannies of the oyster shells.
Grass shrimp, sometimes called ghost shrimp are an important prey species