Wednesday 23 March 2016


Image: Oceana in Europe
Schnoz alert!

These fabulous schnozzles are proudly borne by a pair of fish in the genus Macroramphosus, which is Greek for "great beak". That's close enough to "big nose" for me!

Image: Robertson, D Ross
Slender Snipefish
The two species look very similar, both of them gloriously beschnozzled, fairly slender, and armed with a long spine in their dorsal fin.

Presumably the Slender Snipefish (M. gracilis) is slightly more slender and the Longspine Snipefish (M. scolopax) has a slightly longer spine. The Longspine is also a couple inches longer at 20 cm (8 in) long, compared to the Slender's 15 cm (6 in).

Video: Nature And Relaxing Videos
Longspine Snipefish

Snipefish are found in tropical and subtropical waters across the world from the shallows all the way down to dark depths of 600 metres (2,000 ft). There they swim around, often in groups, and munch on the kind of tiny copepods and ostracods that fit into the tiny mouth at the end of their schnoz.

Speaking of which, Snipefish are named after the similarly beschnozzled bird known as the snipe. Now, they really do have a "great beak"! People who hunted this bird were the first to be called "snipers".

I'm pretty sure Snipefish aren't snipers. Otherwise I wouldn't say "Schnoz alert" so loudly.


Lear's Fool said...

Now I wish they'd named archerfish snipefish!

And these guys...schnozfish!

elfinelvin said...

Those are rather graceful fish for ones with a schnoz that big. Maybe they have choreographers.

Joseph JG said...

@Lear's Fool: Now THAT would make a lot of sense!

@TexWisGirl: For sure!

@elfinelvin: Haha! Like ballerinas in a sword fight!