Thursday, September 15, 2011

Creature Feature: Pipefish.

It is possible to take almost any word, attach "fish" to it, and, lo and behold, it will be a real animal. One of the few words that do not work with this is "peach." Other words beginning with the letter "p," like "pipe" and "parrot," are just fine. Don't believe me? Here's a pipefish:

Pipefish are long, slender fish covered in armored plates. As their strange jaws suggest, they are related to seahorses. Their diet consists largely of copepods - small crustaceans. They are native to tropical ocean waters, with only a few of the 200-odd species being freshwater fish. They are quite popular in reef aquaria and on snorkeling expeditions.

The name of the pipefish subfamily, "Sygnathidae," refers to the fishes' fused, tubular jaws. With a tube like that, the pipefish feed like one might expect: As living Dust Devils. They create a suction in their mouths that sucks in little copepods and smaller fish.


Pipefish, like seahorses, have the male adapted to give birth to the babies. "You knocked me up, so YOU get to raise these guys" - sounds like a good philosophy to me! The snark stops there; pipefish are independent from birth, and may even be considered food by their parents. 


For those of you into Pokemon, the pipefish has a digital friend in Gorebyss. Bogleech says that Gorebyss is more like a deep sea chimera (also very cool fish!), but there is definitely some pipefish in there, too. No, real pipefish are not as bloody as Gorebyss is implied to be. Gen V players will be seeing a lot of Gorebyss, so best get familiar with its real relatives as well.

1 comment:

  1. Haha! That thing about "absolutelyanythingfish" is so true!