Don't be surprised when enjoying a Key West snorkeling excursion to find Trumpetfish hanging around the warm tropical waters of the western Atlantic Ocean, lying very still and motionless, waiting to catch a fish dinner. Trumpetfish are easy to identify because of their very long and slender body which looks like a tube ending in an up-turned mouth that resembles the musical instrument from which they take their name. They can thrive in waters as deep as 100 feet and grow to lengths exceeding 30 inches. Trumpetfish come in a variety of colors, including red, blue, brown and very bright yellow. This coloring enables them to easily blend in and remain hidden among the ocean's reef formations.
Many divers who enjoy Key West snorkeling adventures are surprised to discover that this variety of fish with the very tiny mouth actually preys upon other fish. Much like a snake, the Trumpetfish's small mouth can expand to many times the diameter of its body in order to consume its seafood prey. In order to catch a passing fish as a snack or a meal, the Trumpetfish will wind its thin body around a branch or coral or attach itself to a sea fan and remain motionless until ready to strike.