Curacao Reef Creatures Guideplace order here

Franko's fish cards are stiff, laminated plastic, with a hole for a lanyard. Take it snorkeling or scuba diving with you! Size of Fish Cards: 6" x 9"

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This is a great fish cards because it is a part of my trio of fish cards for the Southern Caribbean Sea, which are of islands known as the “ABC’s” – Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao.  Franko has a series of mini-map/fish cards consisting of one for each of these three islands.  This fish card therefore, is all about some of the world’s greatest coral reef ecosystems, and the incredible opportunities it offers to divers and snorkelers.  Curacao (pronounced “Kur-uh-sow), which is the largest of all of the Netherlands Antilles islands, is famous for desert island beauty and it’s wonderful underwater.  In fact, the island has its own underwater treasure called the Curacao Underwater Park.  The entire leeward side of the island is full of beaches, bays and points for the ocean lover to enjoy.  From north to south there are almost 40 miles (54 kilometers) of beautiful seashore to visit, including Westput, Punt Halve Dag, Kaap St. Marie, Punt Kanon, Boca Santa Cruz, Boca St. Marie, Fuikbaai, Soto, San Willi brordo, Bullenbaai, Oostpunt, Kniplagun, Willemstad, Punda Sint Michiel, Cas Abou, San Juan, San Nicholas, Santa Crux, Niewport, Barbara Beach, and Rif Baai Seaquarium.  Curacao is the site of the town of Willemstad, which is the government seat of the Netherlands Antilles.  Other than its rich undersea life, Curacao is lacking in most natural resources, yet its location and its port has made it militarily important and economically powerful for hundreds of years.  Curacao’s oil refinery and petroleum storage have been its biggest income source for decades, but its reefs are so fabulous that much of the island economy is also based on visitors who come to dive, snorkel and sit on its beautiful beaches.  Side 1 of Franko’s Curacao “fish card” is a mini map of Curacao with a listing of 66 dive sites.  Many of the sites around Curacao are accessible from shore, and dive shops offer excursions to many others as well.  All of the Curacao  sites as they appear on Franko’s Curacao fish card are listed below.  Divers who visit Curacao will soon find out that Curacao is a world class dive destination.  And similar to its sister islands, the Curacao’s tranquil, crystal waters are especially friendly to underwater photography.  This Franko map/fish card is dedicated to promoting Curacao’s fabulous underwater scenery.  Also it is intended to inspire the viewer to love the reefs and reef creatures that fill Curacao’s vast underwater.  The colors of my map clearly say that “Curacao is beautiful and fabulous!”; and “I love Curacao!”  I’ve depicted the island of Curacao as a green jewel within a beautiful setting of descending shades of ocean turquoise.  The shaded relief of the hills, which represents the topography of Curacao, was actually hand-drawn by yours truly, based on old Dutch charts of the island.  This Curacao map is basically a painting, although it was done entirely with computer graphics, rather than actual paint.  The map also includes a miniature globe map (more computer graphics by yours truly) for a perspective of just where in the world Curacao sits.  Although Curacao is in the southern Caribbean, right above Venezuela, along with its sister islands, Bonaire and Aruba, it appears to be the center of the world, according to this globe’s perspective.  For many of Curacao’s diving tourists, it is the center of the world because it is simply so fantastic.  Tourists and divers love to come back to Curacao.  Besides the little map, side 1 of this fish card also shows two sea turtles – both the green sea turtle and the hawksbill sea turtle, as well as a southern stingray, a triton’s trumpet, and a queen conch.  This small sampling of reef creatures is a preview of the 100+ reef creatures that constitute side 2 of the fish card.   I put turtles on side one simply because it is such a thrill for all scuba divers and snorkelers to find them.  Perhaps the only way to have more fun in the water is to see dolphins (or maybe a shark or two!).  Side 1 is the Curacao mini Franko map, but on side 2 the viewer will find the favorite, colorful tropical Caribbean fishes, corals, sponges, and invertebrates that crowd the colorful reefs of Curacao.  This constitutes the “Reef Creatures Identification Guide” portion of Franko’s fish card.  The map is colorful because I simply made it that way, based of the reality of Curacao’s beautiful shape and it’s location in the warm, tropical Caribbean Sea, but Side 2 is colorful because that is just the way Mother Nature intended Curacao’s beautiful reefs to be.  No artist could really improve on or truly depict so much beauty that is in every single part of and within every single creature on the Curacao reefs.  The colors of the fish on side 2 of Franko’s fish card of Curacao proclaim: “Curacao’s reef creatures are beautiful and fabulous!”; and “I love Curacao’s reefs!”  But this isn’t just a nice picture or superlative souvenir of Curacao’s beautiful Caribbean reef creatures.  Indeed, it is also a useful tool for divers and snorkelers who are interested in knowing what it is they are looking at when they are down there.  This fish card is actually waterproof and durable, so divers can take it with them for underwater fish identification, if they wish.  The viewer of Franko’s Curacao Reef Creatures Identification Guide has a handy checklist of dive sites, dive planner, and useful underwater fish identification tool.  The viewer will note that the fish card has a sampling of approximately 100 of Curacao’s most common and most beautiful reef creatures.  When diving or snorkeling this card can be used to satisfy your curiosity about what that beautiful fish you just saw is called.  The astute observer will note when diving that there are actually hundreds of species that are not on Franko’s fish card!  However, this is a great sampling of many of the most common and interesting characters, including a few, but definitely not all of the various parrotfishes, triggerfishes, angelfishes, wrasse, filefishes, groupers, grunts, rays, surgeonfishes, sharks, lobsters, corals, sea fans, sponges, mollusks, and much more.  Many thanks go to Trident Diving Equipment, because the good people there helped me greatly with my fish artwork.  Choosing which 100 or-so reef creatures was a task that was also aided by a few scientists who have made it their passion to study Caribbean reef creatures.  This fish card has actually evolved since its first edition, with the addition of a few species, and the replacement or art improvement of others.  This Curacao fish card and map are both works in progress, with continuous improvements with each new edition.  Franko Maps products are all this works in progress.  Indeed, there is always room for improvement, your inputs are welcome and often very helpful.  So, go ahead and help, if you wish, by emailing me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  While I’m at it I’m going to write down a list of every single Curacao reef creature that is on my fish card.  There are over 100 species shown, plus a few juveniles and male vs. female depictions for variety.  Since I put them on the fish card in random order in the first place, I’ll list them here in random order.  So, here is the 2006 edition of Franko’s Curacao Mini-map and Reef Creatures Identification Guide list:


Franko’s Curacao Caribbean Reef Creatures:

Queen Conch

Hermit Crab

Southern Stingray

Green Sea Turtle

Hawksbill Turtle


Eagle Ray

Blue Tang

Slippery Dick

Barred Hamlet

Triton's Trumpet

Bermuda Chub

Smooth Trunkfish

Yellowhead Wrasse

Black Durgon

Glasseye Snapper


Queen Triggerfish

Longspine Squirrelfish

Redlip Blenny

Sergeant Major

Sargassum Triggerfish

Blue Chromis

Sand Diver

Scrawled Filefish

Foureye Butterflyfish

Spiny Lobster

Coral Crab

Clown Wrasse

Gorgonian Fan

Green Moray Eel


Sea Fan

Fire Coral

Finger Coral

Giant Brain Coral

Mountainous Star Coral

Brown Tube Sponge

Branching Vase Sponge

Basket Sponge

Black Sea Cucumber

Soft Coral

Yellow Tube Sponge

Elkhorn Coral

Fairy Basslet

Spotted Moray Eel

Spotfin Butterflyfish

Brown Chromis

Spotted Scorpionfish


Sand Tilefish

Orange-Spotted Filefish



Yellowstriped Goatfish

Cleaning Goby

Sheet Coral

Queen Angelfish

French Angelfish

Blue Angelfish

Rock Beauty

Reef Butterflyfish

Gray Angelfish


Banded Butterflyfish

Yellowfin Damselfish

Bi-color Damselfish

Blue Parrotfish

Rainbow Parrotfish


Bar Jack

Red Hind

Black Grouper

Nassau Grouper

Tiger Grouper




Spotted Drum

Spanish Hogfish


Yellowtail Snapper

White Grunt

Grey Snapper

French Grunt

Bluestriped Grunt



Creole Wrasse

Bluehead Wrasse

Yellowtail  Parrotfish

Stoplight Parrotfish

Ocean Triggerfish

Princess Parrotfish

Queen Parrotfish


Mahogany Snapper

Honeycomb Cowfish

Striped Burrfish

Horse-eye Jack

Yellow Stingray

Spotted Trunkfish

Glassy Sweepers

White-Spotted Filefish


Orange Tube Sponge


Orange Sponge

Nurse Shark

Cushion Sea Star

Spanish Lobster


While I’m into making lists, here are the fabulous and famous 66 Curacao Dive Sites as they appear on my mini-map of Curacao.  These sites constitute world-class scuba diving, both by boat and from shore, plus a variety of fantastic snorkeling in warm, crystal waters of Curacao’s reef system.  You really need to go there to find out first hand just how extraordinary Curacao’s underwater is.  Here is the list:


Curacao Dive Sites:

Playa Kalki

Playa Piskadó

Playa Forti (Sweet Alice)

Grandi Knip (Playa Abou)

Klein Knip (Playa Kenepe)

Playa Jeremi

Playa Lagun

Boca Santu Pretu

Mushroom Forest

The Cave

Sponge Forest

Playa Hulu


Black Coral Garden

Hell's Corner

Mako's Mountain

Airplane Wreck

Harry's Hole

Playa Hundu (Lost Anchor)

Boka Grandi

Playa Mansaliña

Big Sponge

Playa Largu

Cas Abou (Lower House)

Porto Marie (The Valley)


St. Marie

Light Tower

Seldom Reef


Pestbaai (Lover's Beach)


Car Wrecks (By the road)


Boka Sami

Snake Bay

Kaap Mal Meeuw

The Wall

Blue Bay



The Crash

Double Reef

Superior Producer

Oswaldo's Drop-Off

Car Pile

SS Oranje Nassau

Shipwreck Point


Boka Di Sorsaka

Sandy's Plateau (Jan Thiel)

Diver's Leap

Piedra Di Sombre

Kabes Di Barankes (Beacon Pt.)

Caracabbaai (Lost Anchor)



Small Wall

Punt'i Piku (Barracuda Point)

Eel Valley

Fuikbaai (Newport)

Barank'i Karanito (Kathy's Paradise)

Punti Sanchi (Smokey)


Piedra Pretu (Black Rock)

Oostpunt (No Way)



- Identification Cards