Eel swimming, video


This video shows an eel swimming in the Netherlands.

Robert Hughan made the video.

Rare hairy frogfish on video


Wildlife Extra writes about this 8 July 2015 video:

The Striated or Hairy Frogfish has a secretive lifestyle that involves using the hair-like projections from its body, which are called spinules and which change colour to suit the animal’s surroundings, to merge with the coral or the ocean’s sandy bottom.

There it can lurk, unseen, and attract its prey by waving a special adaptation above it’s large mouth to act like a fishing lure.

The Striated Frogfish, one of a number of different types of frogfish found around the world, is not a good swimmer, preferring to relocate by using its side fins, which are jointed like a mammal’s fingers or toes, to walk across the seabed.

As they don’t do this very often, the fascinating footage taken by J Hawk is rare. It perfectly illustrates the way the frogfish moves and uses its bizarre ‘fishing tackle’.

J Hawk says: “I was on a dive in the south of Malapascua Island in the Philippines. I’d been searching for rare forms of fish for quite some time.

“Out of nowhere I saw this amazing critter coming right at me. I couldn’t believe my eyes! Such a unique and amazing little guy.”

Pacific salmon off English coast


This video is called Pink salmon or humpback salmon (Oncorhynchus gorbuscha).

From the Shields Gazette in England:

Unusual fish caught off the coast of South Shields

by Lisa Nightingale

Friday 07 August 2015

A non-native salmon species has been spotted in the waters around the North East.

The Environment Agency has received calls of unusual fish being caught – one by an angler on the River Tyne near Wylam and another two by licensed netsmen off the coast of South Shields.

It is believed the fish are Pink Salmon – Oncorhynchus gorbuscha – a native of the North Pacific basin and its surrounding rivers.

The Environment Agency’s Richard Jenkins said: “This is quite an unusual find in our waters and we’re keen anglers know we’re aware of the sightings and we’re investigating.

“I’d urge them to contact us if they see any non-native salmon in the waters, with a date, location and if possible a photograph, which would really help us identify them and build up a picture of where they are.

“At this stage we don’t think there’s likely to be a major impact on wild fish stocks.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact the environmental monitoring team at Northumberland, Durham and Tees via 0800 807060.

New fish species discovery in Gulf of Mexico


This video from California in the USA says about itself:

The anglerfish: The original approach to deep-sea fishing

21 November 2014

Deep-sea anglerfish are strange and elusive creatures that are very rarely observed in their natural habitat. Fewer than half a dozen have ever been captured on film or video by deep diving research vehicles. This little angler, about 9 cm long, is named Melanocetus. It is also known as the Black Seadevil and it lives in the deep dark waters of the Monterey Canyon. MBARI‘s ROV Doc Ricketts observed this anglerfish for the first time at 600 m on a midwater research expedition in November 2014. We believe that this is the first video footage ever made of this species alive and at depth.

This video says about itself:

Fishing in the deep: observations of a deep-sea anglerfish

22 August 2012

This video shows never-before seen footage of a deep-sea angler fish, Chaunacops coloratus. In it, we summarize recent work by scientists at Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute, Moss Landing Marine Laboratories, and Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. The video seen here was recorded by MBARI’s ROV Doc Ricketts at depths of 7,800 – 10,800 feet below the ocean’s surface. For more information please see MBARI’s news release.

From CBS Miami in the USA:

NSU Researcher Discovers New Species Of Fish

August 5, 2015 10:44 AM

FT LAUDERDALE – As the saying goes “There’s plenty of fish in the sea,” well a Nova Southeastern University researcher recently discovered one that has never been seen before.

Tracey Sutton, Ph.D., who is part of team at NSU’s Halmos College of Natural Sciences and Oceanography, discovered the new species of Ceratioid anglerfish in the northern Gulf of Mexico at a depth between 1,000-1,500 meters.

Sutton was able to identify the fish with assistance of Dr. Theodore Pietsch from the University of Washington.

At the ocean depths this fish lives in, there is no sunlight. The only light is that from creatures that produce bioluminescence, which means they generate their own light source.

The three female specimens found ranged in size from 30-95 mm in length. Looking at the fish, one quickly understands how anglerfishes get their common name.

They have an appendage at the top of their head, which resembles a fishing pole of sorts. And, like its human counterparts, this fish dangles the appendage until an unsuspecting fish swims up thinking they found a meal, only to quickly learn that they are, in fact, a meal themselves.

“Every time we go out on a deep-sea research excursion there’s a good chance we’ll see something we’ve never seen before – the life at these depths is really amazing,” Dr. Sutton said.

As for this new anglerfish, the three female specimens are considered “type specimens” (i.e. they define the species,) and as such, will reside in the Ichthyology Collection at the University of Washington, which is home to the world’s largest deep-sea anglerfish collection.

Dr. Sutton studies the ecology of marine systems, particularly those of the open ocean. As part of those efforts, Dr. Sutton is leading a team of scientists and researchers studying the effects of oil spills on deep-sea marine life. That project recently received a boost, thanks to a financial award from the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI.) NSU was awarded $8.5 million and is one of 12 organizations selected to receive part of $140 million for continued research in the area of oil spills and how we respond to them.

South African seabirds and climate change


This 2011 video says about itself:

You’ve never seen so many seabirds in one place! A tiny island off the South African coast is the location of one of the biggest gannet colonies on earth.

From Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution:

A changing distribution of seabirds in South Africa—the possible impact of climate and its consequences

In the southern Benguela ecosystem off South Africa, there were recent shifts to the south and east in the distributions of three forage resources (anchovy, sardine, rock lobster), which probably were influenced by environmental change although fishing too may have played a part.

In this study, we review information on trends in distributions and numbers of eight seabirds breeding in South Africa. For five species that feed predominantly on anchovy, sardine or rock lobster, their populations off northwest South Africa decreased markedly. For three of these species, which exhibit behavioral inertia and have restricted foraging ranges when breeding (African penguin, Cape cormorant, bank cormorant), there were large decreases in their overall populations in South Africa.

Conversely, for two showing more plasticity and able to range over wide areas or move between breeding localities (Cape gannet, swift tern) there were increases. It is thought that movement of forage resources away from the northern islands led to a mismatch in the distributions of breeding localities and prey of dependent seabirds off western South Africa and to attempts by several species to establish colonies on the southern mainland closer to food resources.

There also were shifts to the south and east in the distributions of three seabirds that do not compete with fisheries for prey (crowned cormorant, white-breasted cormorant, kelp gull), suggesting some environmental forcing, but decreases of these species off northwest South Africa were less severe and populations in South Africa remained stable or increased in the long term.

It is likely, because many fishing plants are located in the northwest, that there was increased competition between seabirds and fisheries for prey as forage resources moved south and east. Potential interventions to mitigate the adverse impacts of distributional changes for seabirds include allocations of allowable catches of shared forage resources at regional levels, closures to fishing around impacted seabird colonies and establishment of new colonies nearer to the present location of food.

New marine wildlife discoveries in Maltese waters


This vide is called Malta Diving Adventure: Marine Life.

From the Times of Malta:

Wednesday, August 5, 2015, 12:23

73 new species recorded in Maltese waters

A total of 61 authenticated alien species and another five unconfirmed ones were recorded in Maltese waters by the end of last year, according to an extensive survey Julian Evans, Jacqueline Barbara and Patrick J Schembri, from the university’s Department of Biology.

Analysis of the known or probable mode of arrival of these species indicated that the most common mode of introduction was through boating and shipping.

Other species were first introduced elsewhere in the Mediterranean and then managed to spread to the Maltese Islands under their own steam.

Thirty of these records were made since the turn of the century, clearly indicating that the rate of new records was at an all-time high. This was likely due to the present day warming trend of Mediterranean surface water, which favoured the occurrence, establishment and range extension of warm-water species in the central Mediterranean.

The researchers also documented another phenomenon – the spread of Atlantic warm-water species to the central Mediterranean – which was almost certainly related to this warming trend. To date, seven such species have been recorded in the Maltese Islands, so the total number of new species (aliens + Atlantic range extenders) now stood at 73.

Overall, the most represented groups were molluscs (21 species), fish (15 species), crustaceans (eight species) and red algae (seven species).

More than half of the newcomers (38 species) established breeding populations, while a further eight species were considered to be invasive.

These species were the seaweeds Lophocladia lallemandii, Womersleyella setacea and Caulerpa cylindracea, the bivalve Crachidontes pharaonis, the crab Percnon gibbesi, and the fish Fistularia commersonii, Siganus luridus and Sphoeroides pachygaster.

The latter species, a pufferfish, was particularly interesting because it was one of the Atlantic species that extended their range to reach the central Mediterranean independent of any human involvement, and was therefore not considered to be an alien species.

Seahorse discovery in the Netherlands


This video is called Big Belly Seahorse (Hippocampus abdominalis): courtship dance.

Translated from the Dutch marine biologists of Stichting ANEMOON:

Sunday, August 2nd, 2015

On July 22, 2015 scuba divers found a short-snouted seahorse in the Oosterschelde. In the past, observations of what for divers is perhaps the most popular Dutch fish were very rare. Years could go by without scuba divers seeing seahorses in the Dutch coastal waters. The past decade, however, almost every year sightings have been reported. Climate change is probably partly responsible for the fact that seahorses are now present every year in our coastal waters and are observed annually.

It is something special if it happens. You dive as 15-year-old sport diver for the first time ever with an underwater camera in the Oosterschelde. And then, you get the prize and can make beautiful digital photos of it. This is what happened on July 22 to Mees van der Sanden when she and her father went on an early evening dive in the southeastern Oosterschelde. That prize was a meeting with a short-snouted seahorse (Hippocampus hippocampus).