ADVERTISEMENT
  About the SA Blog Network













Extinction Countdown

Extinction Countdown


News and research about endangered species from around the world
Extinction Countdown Home

An ugly truth: The future is dim for the world’s homeliest fish

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.


Email   PrintPrint



blobflishCan’t the blobfish (Psychrolutes marcidus) get some love? This ugly, gelatinous, inedible fish now risks extinction thanks to humans trawling marine murky depths for lobsters and crabs.

Blobfish live at depths of 800 meters off the southeastern coast of Australia. The species has a very limited habitat, and can’t survive elsewhere.

"The Australian and New Zealand deep-trawling fishing fleets are some of the most active in the world, so if you are a blobfish then it is not a good place to be," Callum Roberts of the University of York in England told the Daily Telegraph. "We’ve been overfishing areas up to about 200 m[eters] deep, and now we have moved off those continental shelves and into the deep sea in areas a couple of thousand meters deep."

Blobfish grow to about 30 centimeters in length. They feed on drifting organic matter as they themselves drift above the ocean floor.


Image: Via Wikipedia

Tags:





Rights & Permissions

Comments 11 Comments

Add Comment
  1. 1. krabcat 12:51 pm 02/1/2010

    aw, cute.

    Link to this
  2. 2. candide 1:09 pm 02/1/2010

    Why is SciAm obsessed with "ugly" animals?

    Link to this
  3. 3. usr16 1:17 pm 02/1/2010

    But the blobfish is so cute!!!!!

    Link to this
  4. 4. gsdev 1:37 pm 02/1/2010

    It’s Ziggy!

    Link to this
  5. 5. Albert Reingewirtz 2:26 pm 02/1/2010

    Nets are catching indiscriminately everything and anything and breaking corrals. I remember in the Red sea nets catching a bounty of a tuna related fish they called Palamida. In a shirt few years, at most 5 years the bounty was over. It was non-longer worth the effort to set nets to catch the Palamida. Gone! We are all like someone seating on a tree branch sawing the branch next to the trunk to get fire wood.

    Link to this
  6. 6. lamorpa 3:26 pm 02/1/2010

    @AlbertReingewirtz:
    Are you volunteering to stop eating or to pay much, much more for your protein sources? Seriously. Are you suggesting something here?

    Link to this
  7. 7. ron971 3:33 pm 02/1/2010

    The Rodney Dangerfield of the deep: "I don’t get no respect, I tell ya! No respect at all!"

    Link to this
  8. 8. Bboy705 9:48 pm 02/1/2010

    We’re like the Borg! Consume all the resources and then move on. I have made it a point to stop eating seafood because it is an unsustainable source of food. The same rule needs to be applied to everything we consume. I’m not perfect but I am serious about moving slowly to sustainable consumption. The comment "We’ve been overfishing areas up to about 200 meters deep, and now we have moved off those continental shelves and into the deep sea in areas a couple of thousand meters deep." Does not bode well for the oceans. But the real problem is the rate of growth of the human population, it is really time for us to reconsider the idea that we can have infinite growth and expansion on a finite planet. It really is a very simple reality!

    Link to this
  9. 9. eltanin24 3:46 pm 02/3/2010

    What does a blobfish taste like?

    Link to this
  10. 10. eltanin24 3:46 pm 02/3/2010

    What does a blobfish taste like?

    Link to this
  11. 11. Grasshopper1 9:23 pm 02/4/2010

    Like chicken.

    Seriously, check to see if the seafood you eat is sustainable. You can get the app on the iTouch and the iPhone for FREE! It’s called the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Guide. Get it.

    Link to this

Add a Comment
You must sign in or register as a ScientificAmerican.com member to submit a comment.

More from Scientific American

Scientific American Back To School

Back to School Sale!

12 Digital Issues + 4 Years of Archive Access just $19.99

Order Now >

X

Email this Article



This function is currently unavailable

X