Kai Kupferschmidt, the author of the 2021 book, Blue: In Search of Nature’s Rarest Color says that the colour blue is rare in birds, reptiles, insects, crustaceans, molluscs, and fish, but even rarer in mammals.Continue reading “Why is blue the rarest colour in nature?”
The Longspine Snipefish (Macroramphosus scolopax) is a marine (saltwater) fish in the Macroramphosidae family of snipefish. It is related to the Pipefish. It is also known as the Bellowfish, Spine Trumpet Fish, and Trumpetfish.
The Longspine Snipefish is reddish-pink with a silver underbelly. It has a moderately elongated body and head. It has a long snout (nose) and a tiny mouth without teeth. The snout curves slightly upward. It has scales on its body that are similar to the denticles of sharks because they have sharp ridges and spines. It has large, round eyes.Continue reading “Longspine Snipefish”
Painted Comber Fish
The Painted Comber (Serranus scriba) is a marine (saltwater) fish in the Serranidae family of sea bass, groupers, and anthias.
The Painted Comber has a laterally compressed, elongated body with a pointed snout (nose). It is grey, purplish, or reddish with 5-7 dark-brown bars on its sides. Its head has narrow blue lines and red blotches. Its fins have red dots, and its pectoral fins are pale-yellow. It has a large mouth with sharp teeth.Continue reading “Painted Comber Fish”
CREATURE FEATURE: Redtail Catfish
The Redtail Catfish (Phractocephalus hemioliopterus) is a freshwater fish in the Pimedodidae family of long-whiskered catfish. It is a pimelodid.
The Redtail Catfish has a brownish spotted back with yellow sides and underbelly, and a red tail. Its body is elongated with a broad, flattened head. It has a pair of barbels (long fleshy, string structures) on the upper jaw and two pairs of barbels on the lower jaw.
Fish have scales, but the Redtail Catfish does not have scales. Instead of scales, it has slippery mucous-covered skin with bony plates called scutes.Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Redtail Catfish”
The Bristle-Tail Filefish (Acreichthys tomentosus) is a marine (saltwater) fish in the Monacanthidae family of Leatherjackets. It is related to Pufferfish.
The Bristle-Tail Filefish has a laterally-compressed, rhomboid-shaped body and rough skin like sandpaper. It has many spines. It can rapidly change colour, skin texture, and even skin patterns to avoid predators. It has a tapered snout (nose) and its orange-brown eyes are located high on its head. It has small fins, so it is not a good swimmer.Continue reading “Bristle-Tail Filefish”
Jewel Fairy Basslet
The Jewel Fairy Basslet (Pseudanthias squamipinnis) is a tropical marine (saltwater) fish in the Grammatidae family. It is also known as the Goldie, the Lyretail Fairy Basslet, the Blue-Eyed Anthias, the Orange Butterfly Perch, or the Red Coral Perch.
The Jewel Fairy Basslet is generally gold or red with an orange-blue stripe on its cheek. The male is purplish. It has elongated fins. Its eyes are bright blue.Continue reading “Jewel Fairy Basslet”
Black Spot Piranha
The Black Spot Piranha (Pygocentrus cariba) is an omnivorous freshwater fish in the Serrasalmidae family of serrated fish. It is a serrasalmid.
The Black Spot Piranha is silvery-grey with black markings and yellowish gills. It has a small mouth with a single row of sharp, serrated, triangular, interlocking teeth. Its bite power is very strong. It has an oval-shaped body with a flattened face and large forehead.Continue reading “Black Spot Piranha”
Yellow-Tail Acei Cichlid
The Yellow-Tail Acei Cichlid (Pseudotropheus Acei) is a freshwater fish in the Cichlidae family of cichlids. It is a Mbuna cichlid.
The Yellow-Tail Acei Cichlid has a yellow tail. Its body is blue, blue-purple, or grey.Continue reading “Yellow-Tail Acei Cichlid”
Barrier Reef Chromis
The Barrier Reef Chromis (Chromis nitida) is a marine (saltwater) fish in the Pomacentridae family of damselfish. It is also called the Yellowback Puller or the Shining Puller.
The Barrier Reef Chromis has a yellowish-brown back, a separating dark stripe, and silvery sides and underbelly. The dark stripe is diagonal, starting at the eye and ending at the tail. It has one dorsal (back) fin.Continue reading “Barrier Reef Chromis”
The Zebra Shark (Stegostoma fasciatum) is a marine (saltwater) fish in the Stegostomatidae family of carpet sharks. It is an elasmobranch cartilaginous fish — a fish that does not have a bony skeleton.
The Zebra Shark has a slim, cylindrical body with a slightly flattened head, and a short, blunt snout (nose). It is pale with a pattern of dark spots that is different for each shark. It has five ridges along its body. It eyes are small. Its mouth is almost straight with rows of sharp teeth. It has gill slits on the sides of its body to breathe underwater.Continue reading “Zebra Shark”
CREATURE FEATURE: Atlantic Mudskipper
The Atlantic Mudskipper (Periophthalmus barbarus) is a marine (saltwater) fish in the Oxudercidae family. It is similar to the Goby. It is also found in freshwater and brackish water. It is amphibious – it can live in the water and on land – but it is not an amphibian (like a frog or toad) because it does not have lungs.
The Atlantic Mudskipper has a long brown or greenish body. During the mating season it develops coloured spots, such as red, green or blue. It has close-set, bulging eyes. It has forward fins that are similar to legs that enable it to walk, or skip, along the surface of the mud. It can even climb trees.Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Atlantic Mudskipper”
Red Hook Silver Dollar
The Red Hook Silver Dollar (Myloplus rubripinnis) is a medium-sized freshwater fish in the Serrasalmidae family of silver dollars. It is also called the Redhook Myleus.
The Red Hook Silver Dollar is rounded in shape and laterally compressed. It has a grey body with yellow flecks.Continue reading “Red Hook Silver Dollar”
The Sandbar Shark (Carcharhinus plumbeus) is a marine (saltwater) fish in the Carcharhinidae family of requiem sharks. It is an elasmobranch cartilaginous fish — a fish that does not have a bony skeleton. It is also known as the Thickskin Shark or the Brown Shark. It is related to the Bull Shark.
The Sandbar Shark has a bluish-grey or brownish-grey streamlined body, with a very high, triangular dorsal (back) fin and long pectoral fins. It has a white underbelly. It has a broad, rounded snout and large, round eyes. The upper and lower jaws each have 13 or 14 triangular-shaped teeth.Continue reading “Sandbar Shark”
The Yellow Boxfish (Ostracion cubicus) is a small marine (saltwater) fish in the Ostraciidae family of boxfish.
The Yellow Boxfish has hexagonal scales that form a solid, triangular box-like shell called a carapace. The male and the female look similar. It is bright yellow at birth and the colour fades as it ages. It is yellow with blue-black spots, which are smaller on its white underbelly and larger on its sides. It has a small mouth and large, bulging blue and yellow eyes.Continue reading “Yellow Boxfish”
The Spotted Scat (Scatophagus argus) is a marine (saltwater) fish in the Scatophagidae family of scats. It is also called the Red Scat, the Ruby Scat, the Green Scat, Tiger Butterfish, or Tiger Scat.
The Spotted Scat is varied in colour from greenish brown to red-brown to silver, with many brown spots. It is rounded in shape and laterally compressed. It has a rounded snout (nose).Continue reading “Spotted Scat”
The Greater Pipefish (Syngnathus acus) is a small marine (saltwater) fish in the Syngnathidae family of seahorses, pipefish, and seadragons. Acus means needle.
The Greater Pipefish looks like a thin, straight seahorse or a small sea snake. It is a long, tube-like, cyclindrical brown-coloured fish with a small mouth. Its snout (nose) is a long tube ending in a narrow mouth which opens upwards and is toothless. It has a dorsal (back) fin, which is always moving because it helps the Pipefish to swim. It has small gill openings, called slits, which enable it to breathe underwater.Continue reading “Greater Pipefish”
The Freshwater Angelfish (Pterophyllum scalare) is a freshwater fish in the Cichlidae family. It is the most common Angelfish. It is a cichlid.
The Freshwater Angelfish has a thin, laterally compressed triangular-shaped body. It is silver with three brownish-red vertical stripes on its body and red markings on its fins. It has elongated, trailing fins. It has reddish-brown eyes.Continue reading “Freshwater Angelfish”
The Large-Scaled Scorpionfish (Scorpaena scrofa) is a venomous marine (saltwater) fish in the Scorpaenidae family of scorpionfish. It is also known as the Red Scorpion Fish, the Bigscale Scorpionfish, or the Rascasse.
The Large-Scaled Scorpionfish ranges in colour from rusty-red to light pink to beige, with dark-coloured markings. It has 12 venomous dorsal (back) spines. It has a plump, knobbly body with small frontal eyes and a down-turned mouth.Continue reading “Large-Scaled Scorpionfish”
Mediterranean Rainbow Wrasse
The Mediterranean Rainbow Wrasse (Coris festiva or Coris julis) is a small marine (saltwater) fish in the Labridae family of wrasse.
The Mediterranean Rainbow Wrasse has a colourful, thin, elongated body. The male is green, blue, or brown with a white belly, a dark-blue spot near its tail fin, and a bright orange band along its side. The female is brown with yellowish sides and a white belly.Continue reading “Mediterranean Rainbow Wrasse”
The Banded Leporinus (Leporinus fasciatus) is a freshwater ray-finned fish in the Anostomidae family of characid fish with toothed jaws and an adipose fin (second dorsal fin).
The Banded Leporinus has an elongated body with an upturned mouth. It is cream-coloured with 8-12 thick, black, vertical stripes on its body. It has a reddish patch underneath its mouth, and sometimes on its head and tail.Continue reading “Banded Leporinus”