Leafy Sea Dragon

Phycodurus eques

Not to be mistaken by its close relative, the weedy sea dragon, this special fish is found around the tropical/coastal waters of South and West Australia. They are actually a very close relative to the seahorse! The leafy sea dragon is a master of camouflage. Despite having a few predators, it is able to hide itself quite easily because of its “leaf like” spines/fins that it has amongst the sea plants.

These are also carnivorous, which is surprising giving that they are so small in size. They use their snouts to suck their prey into their toothless mouth!

FUN FACTS:

“The tail of a male leafy sea dragon will turn bright yellow when he is ready to mate.” ~National Geographic

“Sea dragons are completely independent upon hatching. The young feed on the remaining yolk sac and then graduate to consuming zooplankton.” ~Sea World

 

Sources: A-Z AnimalsNatGeoWMAT Sea World

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Humpback Anglerfish

The angler fish, Latin name Melanocetus johnsonii aren’t like any other deep sea fish in many ways. Because they don’t regularly encounter prey, they have large mouths and stomachs and their teeth are pointy in order for them to be able to capture whatever they may find.

They have been known to eat animals almost twice their size. What’s also crazy is that the image above, is of a female angler fish. This is what the male angler fish looks like.The difference is pretty strange! Another famous aspect, probably the most famous one, is the lure they have on the tops of their heads. They use that lure to attract their prey and even to mate! What makes that lure shine is the bacteria that is inside of it.

Fun Fact: There are about 200 angler fish living in various parts of the world. They are normally found in the Atlantic and Antarctic oceans at very deep distances. They often prefer to hide in lonely depths of the sea, but there are some angler fish that have been found in shallow tropical waters.

Sources: Male AnglerfishFun FactOceana