The Timaru Herald

Walk­ing fish found on bar­rier reef

- Biology · Animals · Zoology · Science · Ecology · Wildlife · Great Barrier Reef · United States of America · James Cook · Queensland · Hawaii · Schmidt Ocean Institute · James Cook University

A rare species of walk­ing fish never seen in Aus­tralian wa­ters has been dis­cov­ered off the Great Bar­rier Reef. Re­searchers from the Sch­midt Ocean In­sti­tute in the US used a deep-div­ing drone a kilo­me­tre be­low the sea to col­lect sam­ples, map and film un­ex­plored parts of the reef. Robin Bea­man, a sci­en­tist from James Cook Univer­sity in Queens­land, said the team was sur­prised to find a species of scor­pi­onfish called Rhinopias agroliba 700ft be­low the sur­face. ‘‘It was very strange – it had this beau­ti­ful red colour and it walked on its pec­toral fins like a set of hands,’’ Dr Bea­man said. ‘‘It looked weird, but it was also dis­play­ing this weird be­hav­iour, walk­ing along the seafloor.’’ Ex­perts watch­ing live pic­tures from the drone said the clos­est place that was known for the species was Hawaii.

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