This podcast episode we talk about the Anglerfish! Relax, unwind, and join me 6000 feet deep in the ocean, where we learn all about a strange fish that fishes for other fish.
To contact Stef Wolfe you can:
If you would like to learn more, the resources used in this episode are listed below:
For exclusive content like the Extinct and Mythical Animal Mini-Series, go to the Patreon by clicking here.
Rock some awesome podcast-themed merch by clicking here.
You can also check out informative blog posts on relaxwithanimalfacts.com/blog.
Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
hello everyone and welcome back to relax with animal facts I am staff wharf and today I am going to be learning with you about her furry scaly or possibly even slimy friends and in today's case it is definitely going to be a scaly friend of ours because we are covering the %HESITATION so wonderful anglerfish this is a very special listener episode dedicated to login M. J. Grady and his dad Kyle now M. J. Brady and his dad Kyle actually requested the football fish which is a kind of anglerfish so that is why you are being shouted out and why this episode is dedicated to you the football fish is also of course a pertinent to suggestion given the fact that right now the World Cup is raging everybody's cheering for their teams and so here we are today covering an animal that has a sub species known as the football fish but thank you for your request to Logan M. J. Brady and Kyle this episode would not have been possible without your wonderful suggestion for how to request your very own episode and for the resources that were used in this episode all of that information will be at the end of the episode but it is also immediately accessible in the show notes or the description and now we're going to begin to slow down as we begin and prepare ourselves to not to journey into the forests or to track on high mountains but rather to go into the deep sea and so of course any sort of journey of like this requires some preparation and I have to exhortations for each and everyone of you the first is that you bring a sweater because we are going to be going into a high tech research vessel that will allow us to plumb the depths of the sea and the second is that you try your best to imitate Jello all of us Kerry tension in one way or another for some of us it's in the head for some in the shoulders in the legs but regardless of where it is and everybody is truly different here my request of you is the same do your best to imbibe cello and allow your body to totally relax because we will not need all of that tension where we are going and so %HESITATION allow your mind to wander and journey with me as players stepping foot onto this research vessel and as we break the ocean's surface and begin our descent into the deep blue sea where the anglerfish resides hi Sean entries and okay now the reason we did not put on our scuba gear like we do many a time as we go into the ocean is because how deep we are going which we will find out in just a moment comes with beauty of course but also comes with remarkable pressure as we descended deeper and deeper into the water the pressure increases and at these depths where the angler fish swims and enjoys itself is not a habitable condition for us as human beings and so we are aboard this very high tech research vessel that allows us to maneuver these areas with comfort and ease and we can simply enjoy the view that is provided to us now many of us are familiar with the angler fish admittedly the only contact I have had with this creature has been in cartoons once these creatures were first discovered our curiosity piqued to such a degree that it was thrown into some of the biggest movies that many of us know by heart of curiosity was so peak because of how special and how unique this creature is as we will learn the anglerfish is of course a fish they are a sort of fish that is very deep under the water of our seas they live in what is called the bathypelagic zone of the open ocean at least many of the subspecies do that fancy word bathypelagic indicates depth specifically so what is a layer of the ocean this zone describes between one thousand to four thousand meters on to the water for about three thousand two hundred and eighty two thirteen thousand one hundred and twenty feet but for our case today we are swimming at a depth of six thousand six hundred feet or two thousand meters under the water so when we say that this is a deep sea fish it really is a deep sea fish the lower pray towards them with their fishing rods like appendages and once an unsuspecting fish swims just to close the anglerfish will snap them up as we will learn later in the episode this is exactly how they got their name these deep sea fish catch fish themselves there are over two hundred species of deep sea anglerfish one of the species that was requested was the football fish which is one of those over two hundred species today we are covering the sort of broad term of anglerfish all of those subspecies or worth our attention but for today we are looking at many of them at the same time these fish are immediately recognizable by their jaws literally lined with their teeth razor sharp and varying in length but as is the case with many other animals we have covered these over two hundred species can differ very widely the Black Sea double which has those very characteristic and recognizable to see jaws just accumulating out every which way varying in length but then on the other side you have the bottom dwelling sea toad that is also a deep sea anglerfish and so they do come in all sorts it's of shapes and sizes many common angler fish will be around the size of a coffee Cup but then there are some species in which the females can reach over one hundred pounds some of them can even grow to over three feet in length now the reason why I singled out the females in specific in regards to how large they are is because depending on the species males can be just one tenth of the size of females the largest of the angler fish that have been discovered so far are known as war T. C. doubles and to give just an illustration as to how seriously different the males and the females can be the females of this particular species can reach up to three feet long while males can measure in at under an inch that is like putting a baseball bat besides a paper clip the average baseball bat is about three feet while paper clips are often just an inch long and so that gives us just some relative illustration as to how different they can be and now focusing on their claim to fame which is fair hunting strategy here at depths of sixty six hundred feet meals can sometimes be few and far between bucked the anglerfish has adopted a very unique strategy that can help them find their next meal instead of like many of the creatures we have covered in the past instead of expending energy to hunt prey the anglerfish sports a fishing pole like rod that projects from its head at the end of this road is a sack full of bioluminescent bacteria that would bioluminescent simply means light that is given off from a biological source or light given off from something living and so this bacteria that is within this sack at the end of the road on their head exudes a light that can be very alluring in the deep dark depths where we are it will glow brightly and this flight will attract curious pray towards their open waiting mouth functioning logically much like we as humans fish and lower and bait today while we are navigating in the Atlantic Ocean most of the species of anglerfish are going to live in the murky depths of the Antarctic oceans as well as the Atlantic but there are some species of this over two hundred that will live in shallow tropical environments instead submitting again a very stark contrast between these subspecies now that lower that we have just learned about one important aspect of the lower is that it is only on the females of the anglerfish so whenever we see this very distinctive feature in a cartoon or in a documentary we have to understand that this is a female one hundred percent of the time the males of all of the angler fish species or without this characteristic or this thing that we associate most with the anglerfish so this rod to that be learned about out is actually a piece of their dorsal spine that will protrude above their mouth into the females in addition to being much larger than the males on average will be the only ones to support these fishing lures now with this fishing the were they can draw squid small fish and even other cephalopods if we remember from previous episodes what a cephalopod is is a predatory mollusk that encompasses that large class that we have covered some animals in already that class cephalopod it which will include animals like octopus and squid now among the differences between the males and females I don't believe that we have covered anything like this in the previous hundred twenty something odd episodes the male anglerfish are considered to be what is termed parasitic mates now we have learned about parasitic relationships symbiotic relationships commensal relationships these are the relationships that describe behavior between different creatures and this is why they are cold parasitic mates when a young free swimming male anglerfish encounters a female in the deep sea what he will do is latch on to her with his sharp teeth and over time the mail will physically fuse with the female fusing or connecting to her skin and even to her bloodstream but in the process losing his allies all of his internal organs except the reproductive ones and a female anglerfish can carries six or more males on her body at any one time it is facts like this that represent the strangeness the mysterious miss the wonder of the natural world and what else I think is important is that much of the deepsea remains entirely undiscovered or unknown this is simply one of the creatures in that vast ecosystem and it exhibits a mating behavior that is one of the most strange that we have covered on the show so far for those that are working in the field of marine biology or in any way work with the deep dark oceans what an exciting business who knows what other kind of wonderfully strange creatures are there now let us go back to their hunting or to their anatomy for just a moment the anglerfish once it has lured in its prey can swallow creatures that are pretty big and the reason they can do this is because they have a large mouth so large in fact that it can extend all over the entire circumference of their head their wide mouths will have jaws that are aligned with those inwardly inclined small teeth and these teeth have a specialized shape in addition to them being inwardly inclined as opposed to going every which way outside of the fish or even just shooting straight up these teeth can also be flattened this serves to specific purposes the first is that when food is coming in it doesn't create any resistance to the fish actually going into the mount as if the teeth would block or create some restriction the second benefit of having their teeth like this is that it offers a prevention for the food actually escaping out of the mouth they act something like a trap that once they are in the angler fish's mouth getting out to see monumental task the bones of the anglerfish are thin and incredibly flexible which is what allows it to extend its jaw so far as well as its stomach this allows it to swallow prey that is twice as large as the body of the anglerfish itself the way this fish actually eats is also interesting the closest thing we could point to to give an illustration is a vacuum their mouth works something like that after they have drawn in their prey with their bioluminescent Luers they will rapidly throw open their large melts and what results is a powerful suction movement that will draw in everything surrounding their mouth which includes the fish in this case of course drawing that fission rapidly into their mouth after which of course their teeth fiercely guard any kind of exit we just talked about parasitic relationships just a moment ago but I want to talk about a symbiotic relationship for a moment a symbiotic relationship is one in which both creatures were species or life forms a symbiotic relationship by contrast what we have already learned is one in which two creatures animals mutually benefit from each other this relationship is seen in the anglerfish in relation to their %HESITATION bioluminescent bacteria so the female anglerfish is not the only one benefiting from having this light upon their head well that is the benefit to the female draws the bioluminescent bacteria is only able to survive in sea water and the deep sea habitats in which the angler fish swims around in is perfect for their survival and so the bacteria have a home and in exchange make those chemicals necessary for that to light to be shining while sometimes creatures in the natural world don't get along too well sometimes they do one thing that I forgot to mention is actually their scientific name the common name of course is the angler fish but their scientific name is lo fi formats as always we can mine this etymology to figure out why the scientific name was used for the animal the prefix low flow comes from a Greek word that can mean a plethora of different things among which are the crest of a helmet the crest of the hill all of them have this sort of rich or crest kind of connotation now this distinction sort of confused me at first because I did not see some sort of large crested Finn going somewhere if we remember what we learned earlier that rods that carries that bio luminescent gold is actually a piece of the dorsal spine that protrudes out from their body and so perhaps this crashed this ridge is referring to that wrote specifically that is only a guess of mine I have not found the answer to that question but maybe that is it and now let us move to the name of the creature %HESITATION itself the angler fish what does it mean where does it come from let's first break down angler where exactly does this come from it was used to describe a Fisher with the hook and the line it was used as early as the mid fifteenth century and that this is a noun that was taken from the verb angle and what it means is to fish with a hook so of course we see how this could apply to the angler fish given the fact that they participate in their own deep sea fishing with lures and hooked teeth and now let us move to a review submitted by a special listener out there today it is written by battles with a lot of elves and asses and bells writes all the way from the United States of America my favorite podcast ever I struggle so much with falling asleep and this podcast has helped me so so much with getting to sleep I love learning all these facts which helps my brain relax and focus on some animals rather than the stressful bits of my day thank you I'm currently listening to my listener episode and couldn't be more happy smiley face well bellow some very happy that you got your very own listener episode and that you are currently listening to it as you were writing this review I can't tell you and all of you listening how grateful I am to be among somebody's favorite podcasts I'm also grateful that I can help you build specifically with falling asleep and helping you relax I'm glad you enjoyed the show and I'm very happy that you are a C. special part of it and that of course goes for each and everyone of you listening if this podcast helps you in any way and you would like to give back to the show the evening a review whether it is good or bad is one of the biggest ways to give back it helps me to make the show better it allows it to grow and gives more people the ability to fly into the show and to relax right alongside us as far as I'm concerned the more people that join us in this case would have joined us on the research vessel if you would like more of the podcast including exclusive episodes you can go to patrie on dot com slash relax with animal facts or just go into the link in the description our show notes of this episode all of the tears are exactly the same and give you full access to all the content I wanted to make sure as many people could come as possible and make those episodes as accessible as I could all of the facts used in this episode came from National Geographic dot com Monterey Bay aquarium dot org world atlas dot com eighty Z. animals dot com that's him online dot com and %HESITATION she Anna dot org all of those resources are in the description this episode would not have been possible without their important contributions and so if you feel so inclined and encouraged to explore their resources I encourage you to do so what a creature we have learned about today I think this is the first time in the podcast in which we have the opportunity to traverse the depths in a submarine or research vessel how cool is that it's certainly no cooler than the animal we learned about today it just shows me how much more a wonder there is in the world that I have not yet discovered and that I hope to share with all of you thank you all for joining me on this episode of the relax with animal facts podcast if you like it you can follow you can share but to the greatest thing that you can do is to join me on the next podcast episode with the next animal take care