Τρίτη, 23 Μαΐου 2017

1) Due to its amazing camouflage and complex luring behaviors, the frogfish is considered one of the most complicated, efficient examples of aggressive mimicry.

2) There are about 46 known species of frogfish worldwide in tropical and temperate seas.

3) The frogfish is carnivorous and has the fastest-known prey engulfment of any vertebrate.

frogfish facts

The frogfish is carnivorous.

Jeff Rotman/ALAMY

4) Unlike the chameleon, the frogfish is unable to change its color quickly, instead taking several weeks.

5) There are two major groups of frogfishes. One has a relatively small number of large eggs that are attached to the body during their development. The other spawns a mass of small eggs that immediately floats away in ocean currents to fend for themselves.

6) During a recent coral-bleaching event in the Maldives, where great areas of coral became pure white, a frogfish was found camouflaging itself against these ghostly corals.

7) Some deep-sea relatives of the frogfish exhibit sexual parasitism, where tiny parasitic males attach to larger females. Males fuse to their partners, receiving nutrients while supplying sperm in return.

8) The psychedelic frogfish has been ID’d only around the island of Ambon, Indonesia.

frogfish facts

The frogfish swims by jet propulsion.

Nature Picture/ALAMY

9) The frogfish swims by jet propulsion. It uses backward-facing, tubelike gill openings that propel it along rather than using a tail like most fishes.

10) An obscure group of 14 handfishes, living only in southern Australian waters, are some of the frogfish’s most ancient relatives. They are exceedingly rare, and some species are known only from a single specimen. The spotted handfish is one of the rarest of these fishes. This Critically Endangered fish exists only around a single estuary in southern Tasmania.

11) The frogfish lacks a swim bladder. This structure is found in most swimming fishes; it maintains their buoyancy in a similar manner to a diver’s BC.

12) Different species of the frogfish have different lures (escae), which they wave in front of their mouth to attract prey. Some have lures that resemble shrimps, others fishes, worms or tiny squids. Recent research has shown the striated frogfish’s lure to be biofluorescent.

frogfish facts

Hairy frogfishes usually mimic algae or soft corals.

Steve Bloom Images/ALAMY

13) Striated, or hairy, frogfishes usually mimic algae or soft corals, but can occasionally mimic venomous black urchins.

14) Juvenile painted frogfish mimic toxic nudibranchs. Because of this behavior, they have little to fear from their own predators while being ignored by their prey, allowing easy ambush.

Follow Richard Smith’s under water adventures at oceanrealmimages.com.