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S Bermudian caressing Herb the hind.

Herb the hind gets to be the star when the snappers are off mating, mid-summer.

Herb is a Red Speckled Hind but he can change hue. He also has a friend, Herb Junior, with whom he would rather not share food. Herb being the larger of the two will assume a light sand matching colour and come right out away from the reef and wait underneath me as I am kneeling. I will then sneak a piece of food in my hands and cup it by my window (praying posture). Herb will bravely come up to my window and gulp the food before any snappers figure out what is going on. Herb Jr. has to meekly stay on the reef (assuming a darker reef colour) and wait till later in the dive to eat. As of July 2013 we have three red hinds on the squid roll.

Herb is a carnivore. He eats meat and kills fish. This means he has an aggressive attitude that can be harnessed. A human can present themselves in a superior position by having food and be willing to share it. This is how we develop a trusting relationship. Herb looks cute, but if I ignore him for too long he will help himself to my fingers as if to remind me that he is hungry. He has well over a hundred small and very sharp teeth. They all point inward as if to indicate a one way street.

When the snappers go off to mate there is a power vacuum that is filled by the hinds. Herb will come off the bottom and sit on hands, helmet bottoms or what ever is convenient and feels safe.