The Silver Dollar (Metynnis argenteus) is a freshwater tropical fish. It is a serrasalmid from the Characidae family – the serrated salmon family – such as the pacu and piranha.
The Silver Dollar has a round, flat body that is laterally compressed (thin). It is silver all over, with a hint of red in its fins, especially its tail fin, and around its throat. During the breeding season, the male has two large black spots behind its pectoral fins, the red colour deepens, and a black margin (border) appears on his fins.
Continue reading “Silver Dollar”
The Electric Yellow Fish (Labidochromis caeruleus) is a freshwater fish in the Cichlid family. It is also known as the Lemon Yellow Lab, the Blue Streak Hap, and the Yellow Prince.
The Electric Yellow Fish is a thin, laterally compressed fish. It is bright yellow with red eyes.
Continue reading “Electric Yellow Fish”
The Blue Gourami (Trichogaster trichopterus) is a freshwater fish in the Osphronemidae family of labyrinthine fish. It is also known as the Dotted Threadfish, the Blue Threadfish, the Opaline Gourami, or the Three Spot Gourami.
The Blue Gourami is blue-grey to ochre-brown, yellow-orange, and violet. It has the appearance of mother-of-pearl, opal, or iridescence. At the base of the tail fin and in the centre of its body are dark-brown or black spots. Its eyes are reddish-black.
Continue reading “Blue Gourami”
The Smooth Blenny (Lipophrys pholis) is a marine (saltwater) fish. It is also known as the Common Blenny, the Pholis Blenny, or Shanny.
The Smooth Blenny has smooth skin that changes colour to camouflage itself in its surroundings. It is usually green with mottled black patterns. It has an elongated body with a continuous dorsal (back) fin.
Continue reading “Smooth Blenny”
The Small-Spotted Catshark (Scyliorhinus canicula) is a cartilaginous marine (saltwater) fish in the Scyliorhinidae family of dogfish. It is also known as the Sandy Dogfish, Lesser-Spotted Dogfish, or Round-Hound.
The Small-Spotted Catshark has an elongated, slender body with a blunt head. Its skin is rough (like sandpaper). It is greyish-brown with dark-brown spots. Its underbelly is greyish-white.
Continue reading “Small-Spotted Catshark”
The Auratus Cichlid (Melanochromis auratus) is a small freshwater fish in the Cichlid family. It is also known as the Golden Mbuna and the Malawi Golden Cichlid.
The Auratus Cichlid is elongated with a silver sheen and black and white stripes on the upper half of its body. The male is dark brown or black with a light-bluish or yellow stripe. The female is bright yellow with black and white stripes.
Continue reading “Auratus Cichlid”
The School Shark (Galeorhinus galeus) is a small marine (saltwater) shark in the Triakidae family of houndsharks. It is also known as the Tope Shark and Snapper Shark.
The School Shark is a small shark with an elongated snout (nose). It has a large, crescent-shaped mouth with triangular-shaped, serrated teeth. It has two dorsal (back) fins – one is triangular and the other is smaller.
Continue reading “School Shark”
The Violescent Sea-Whip (Paramuricea clavata) is a marine (saltwater) soft coral in the Plexauridae family. It is also known as the Purple Gorgonin. It is an animal, not a plant.
The Violescent Sea-Whip is red or reddish-purple, but it may be partly yellow. It grows in the soil at the bottom of the ocean. It has branching arms, like a whip, that form a fan shape. The stem and branches are made from a protein called gorgonin, that forms a bony skeleton. Polyps protrude from the skeleton. The polyps have a central mouth disc with eight tentacles around the circular disc.
Continue reading “Violescent Sea-Whip”
The Boarfish (Capros aper) is a marine (saltwater) fish in the Caproidae family.
The Boarfish is reddish-orange with darker bands running vertically down its diamond-shaped body. It has large eyes, a protruded nose (like a pig’s nose) and a tube-like mouth. It has saw-toothed scales.
During breeding season, the male has orange lines on its body, and its dorsal (back) and ventral fins (near its stomach) turn red. During the breeding season, the female is orange and her belly and ventral fins turn silver.
Continue reading “Boarfish”
The Siberian Sturgeon (Acipenser baeri) is a freshwater fish.
The Siberian Sturgeon is elongated, similar to a shark. It has smooth scaleless skin (unlike fish that have scales). It has five lateral rows of bony plates called scutes.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Siberian Sturgeon”
The Arapaima (Arapaima gigas) is a large freshwater fish in the Arapaimidae family of bonytongue fish. It is also known as Pirarcu.
The Arapaima has mainly grey to grey-green scales, with red flecks near its tail. It has an elongated body. It is an air-breather, so it has lungs, but it also has gills to breathe underwater. It surfaces for air about every 5-15 minutes.
Continue reading “Arapaima”
The Spotfin Butterflyfish (Chaetodon ccellatus) is a tropical marine (saltwater) fish.
The Spotfin Butterflyfish is a flat, laterally compressed fish with a dark spot of its dorsal (back) fin. It has a vertical, black bar through its eye, which fades and disappears with age. It has a blue body and yellow fins.
Continue reading “Spotfin Butterflyfish”
The Tube-Dwelling Anemone (Cerianthus membranaceus) is a marine (saltwater) invertebrate, without a backbone. It is an animal, not a plant. It is also known as the Cylinder Anemone.
The Tube-Dwelling Anemone has about 200 tentacles in two whorls around its central mouth, called an oral disc. The tentacles along the outer whorl are long and slender with stinging cells. The tentacles along the inner whorl are shorter. The tentacles can be many colours, such as white, yellow, orange, green, brown, blue, black, purple, pink, and violet.
The tentacles do not retract, but the whole animal can retract into its tube. It has a long cylindrical column which is buried in the soil. The tube is its permanent home.
Continue reading “Tube-Dwelling Anemone”
The Striped Sweetlips (Plectorhinchus diagrammus) is a freshwater and a saltwater fish in the grunt genus.
The Striped Sweetlips has big, fleshy lips. It changes its colour and patterns throughout its life. Typically, it gets more stripes as it ages.
Continue reading “Striped Sweetlips”
The European Flounder (Platichthys flesus) is both a marine (saltwater) and a freshwater fish in the flatfish family. It is also known as the White Fluke.
The European Flounder has a brown, flat, oval-shaped body with reddish spots and brown blotches. Its underbelly is pearly-white. It can change colour to camouflage itself in its surroundings. It has eyes on the top of its head, and a small mouth at the end of a blunt snout (nose). Its skin is rough, with prickly tubercles (round nodules).
Continue reading “European Flounder”
The Black Arowana (Osteoglossum ferreirai) is a freshwater fish. It is also called the Black Dragon Fish or the Black Monkey Fish.
The Black Arowana has a long body, large black-coppery scales, and a tapered tail. Its back fins extend all the way to the tail. Its mouth has a downward slant and its bottom lip is large and protruded. It has a large dark eye.
Continue reading “Black Arowana”
The French Angelfish (Pomacanthus paru) is a marine (saltwater) fish in the Pomacanthus family.
The French Angelfish has a large, round, flat body with a trailing fin, a protruding bottom lip, and large eyes. Its body is dark blackish-blue with yellow-edged scales. It has black fins, yellow pectoral (side) fins, white around its mouth and chin, and yellow around its eyes. It has comb-like teeth.
Continue reading “French Angelfish”
The Cardinalfish (Apogon imberbis) is a marine (saltwater) fish in the Apogonidae family. It is also known as the Mediterranean Cardinalfish or the King of the Mullets.
The Cardinalfish has a compressed body with a large head and a large mouth. Its lower jaw protrudes over its upper jaw. It is reddish-pink with a round black eye. It has two or three dark spots on the base of its caudal fin.
Continue reading “Cardinalfish”
The Beadlet Anemone (Actinia equina) is a marine (saltwater) invertebrate, which means that is has no backbone. It is also known as the Sea Tomato. It is an animal, not a plant.
The Beadlet Anemone is bright red with tentacles, and its mouth in the centre. It has short, conical tentacles arranged in rows of six or more, which is called the crown of tentacles. The crown surrounds its oral disc (mouth). The tips of the tentacles can be pointed or blunt.
Continue reading “Beadlet Anemone”
The European Lobster (Homarus gammarus) is a marine (saltwater) clawed crustacean. It is also known as the Common Lobster. It is related to the American Lobster (Homarus americanus). Crustaceans include crabs, crayfish, and shrimps.
The European Lobster is a decapod with ten legs, including a large pair of claws or nippers. It has a hard, blue shell called an exo-skeleton. It has eye-stalks. The shell is covered with pointed tubercules (like mini-teeth). It has gills to breathe oxygen from the sea water. Its abdomen has six segments, ending with a fan-shaped tail called a telson.
Continue reading “European Lobster”