The Hardly ever Seen Little Dragonfish

 My guidebook to Purple Sea fishes says of the Little Dragonfish: ‘Hardly ever seen, however most likely extra frequent than thought’  I are inclined to agree; it took two of us virtually a whole dive to seek out these two fish, it was price it although, to see one of many oddest wanting fishes I’ve ever seen. Eurypegasus draconis ranges throughout the Indo Pacific area. Feeding on small crustaceans, presumably copepods and the like, these fish, often in pairs, lead fairly unremarkable lives.  Hardly ever observed by divers and predators alike I think about, they’re mentioned to be fairly frequent on gravel kind substrates the place the male will defend a small territory for his chosen mate.  I can not stress sufficient simply how arduous they’re to seek out, particularly within the shallows the place floor waves trigger glitter traces. As you may see the fish have flattened our bodies, snouts ideally suited to choose at small prey gadgets, and really massive wing-like pectorals which explains the household identify of Pegasidae, after the winged horse in Greek mythology. FishBase acknowledges two genera and 6 species of dragonfish, although Seamoth is its most well-liked frequent identify.  While they might resemble fish of the Scorpaniformes in some methods, they’re members of the order Syngnathiformes, which amongst others comprises the pipefish, shrimpfish, and seahorses.  Certainly, on the identical dive I discovered a stunning pipefish which I believe is Corythoichthys schultzi.  For those who examine the fishes’ heads they’re fairly related.  Now that I’ve seen these fish I’m wondering if I shall ever see them once more?  Even when they’re frequent, they take some discovering…

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