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The spotted cleaner shrimp (Periclimenes yucatanicus) is a brightly colored shrimp which have been observed to remove and eat parasites, injured tissue, and possibly undesirable food particles from a large variety of cooperating reef fishes. This symbiotic behavior is so well developed in some cases that the shrimps are invited to enter the mouths and gill cavities of their hosts, apparently with complete immunity from being eaten.These shrimp are a important aset to their ecosystems. They are, together with certain fishes that also clean, seemingly responsible for the control of gill, oral, and external parasites of the various reef fishes.


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