Fun facts

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - LIVING -

STARCHILD was pleas­antly sur­prised to re­ceive a let­ter from Wong Chin Hooi, a 60-year-old reader, who sub­mit­ted some fas­ci­nat­ing facts about fresh­wa­ter aquar­ium fish.

> The four-eyed fish from South Amer­ica has its iris di­vided into two parts and shaped like the fig­ure eight. These fish can see be­low and above the wa­ter at the same time.

> The blind cave fish from Mex­ico lives in streams lo­cated in caves. Though blind, the fish can de­tect food by scent and swims freely with­out knock­ing into ob­jects.

> When the archer­fish sights land-based in­sects above the wa­ter sur­face, it spits out jets of wa­ter through its mouth to knock down its prey.

> The puf­fer­fish has an abil­ity to in­flate it­self with air or wa­ter like a bal­loon when threat­ened, fright­ened or caught out of wa­ter.

> The hatch­et­fish has an en­larged chest con­sist­ing of mus­cles and wing-like pec­toral fins which en­able it to “fly” for short dis­tances when threat­ened by preda­tors.

> The but­ter­fly fish, found in streams in West Africa, can leap out of wa­ter and glide us­ing its but­ter­fly-like pec­toral fins to es­cape preda­tors.

> When its habi­tat dries up, the climb­ing perch breathes sur­face air, and “walks” across dam­p­land for sev­eral hours us­ing its pec­toral fins and ex­tended gill cov­ers as props, as its tail moves it­self for­ward. It is also ca­pa­ble of climb­ing along fallen tree trunks.

> The glass cat­fish’s long flat­tened body is al­most as trans­par­ent as glass. This pe­cu­liar fish has all its or­gans po­si­tioned into a sil­very sac.

> Be­ware of the elec­tric eel from the Ama­zon river in South Amer­ica. Its or­gans can send out pow­er­ful elec­tric shocks, of­ten fa­tal to hu­mans and an­i­mals.

Chan Kai er, 12

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