10 Mola Mola, or Ocean Sunfish, Facts: The fish so nice they named it twice!
1. Mola mola are known because of their unusual shape: an upright flattened disk, tapered top and bottom fins between body and tail, and small black eyes halfway between its small pectoral (side) fins and round mouth.
2. Mola Mola Sunfish got their name because they like to lay down on their sides and sun themselves at the surface. They do this to stay warm and to get rid of parasites (seabirds eat those).
3. Mola Mola are related to pufferfish, porcupinefish, and filefish (same Order Tetradontiformes).
4. Mola Mola lack a swim bladder so they swim constantly (or move fins side-to-side to hover).
5.Mola Mola are the largest bony fish in the ocean! Average length 5.9 ft (1.8m), 8.2 ft (2.5m) fin-to-fin Max length 10.8 ft (3.3m), 14 ft (4.2m) fin-to-fin Weight range 545 lbs (247kg) to 5,100 lbs (2,300kg)
6. A single Mola Mola can host up to 40 species of parasites. It gets rid of them by sunning at the surface and having seabirds eat the parasites, or by cleaner fish and other fish eating the parasites at cleaning stations, or by breaching up to 10 ft (3m) out of the water.
7. Ocean Sunfish eat mainly jellies, but also eat salps, squid, crustaceans, small fish, fish larvae and eel grass.
8. Mola Mola can swim to depths down to 2,000 ft (600m).
9. Ocean Sunfish can grow to 60 million times their birth size (0.1 in, 2.5mm), a record for vertebrates! As fry (babies that are part of the plankton), sunfish have spines all around their body that they outgrow.
10.Enemies as young include bluefin tuna and mahi mahi, as adults sea lions (who often bite off their fins and play with them), killer whales, sharks and humans (caught to eat or as by-catch).
1. All Piranhas fish live in tropical freshwater rivers, lakes, and lagoons in the northern half of South America.
2. There are between 30-60 species of Piranha fish.
3. Piranhas’ teeth are triangular shaped and as sharp as sharks’ teeth.
4. Only 3 species of Piranhas are considered dangerous to humans:
a. Black shoulder Piranha
b. Red-bellied Piranha (average sized at 13 inches and 3 pounds)
c. Sao Francisco Piranha (largest at 24 inches and 13 pounds)
5. There have been no fatal attacks on humans as Piranhas only bite fingers, toes and chunks of legs and hips.
6. Piranhas live 10-25 years.
7. Shoals of up to 1000 Piranhas stay together to survive, not necessarily to hunt.
8. Most Piranhas are omnivores that eat meat (scavenge mainly), seeds and fruits.
9. Predators include caimans (a small crocodile), river otters, larger fish, and herons (a large bird).
And the last fascinating piranha fact is:
10. When Piranhas attack a large animal, they eat the flesh and muscle in seconds, and leave only the skeleton.