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Frogfish

Frogfish

Frogfish is an angler fish, which belongs to the family of Antennariidae. There are around 44 members in the frogfish family. These species vary at a huge level on the basis of their size. The Bandfin Frogfish can grow up to a size of only 5 cm, whereas the Giant Frogfish can grow up to a size of 40 cm. As their size varies, their coloration, markings and body patterns also varies. As far as the shape of the body is considered, it is almost similar. Frogfish are the underwater dwellers and very little is known about this species. They have unique characteristics that they can adapt themselves very well in their natural surroundings. Their camouflaged behavior makes them very difficult to be detected and so much is not known about them. They vary in coloration and markings in such a way that it is very difficult to identify the species correctly.

Frogfish Habitat and Distribution
These frogfish have a filament attached to their heads and they use this filament to catch their prey. They remain stationary for most of time and wait for the right fish to come. When the fish gets attracted towards the lure on their long filament, the frogfish sucks the prey to their mouth. In this way, they catch their prey. This is the reason that they do not need to move for their prey. They move only when they sense danger or when they need to mate. These fish are found in the tropical waters of Asia. They are common in the areas where conditions are quite favorable to them. Most probably, they like to live in the coastal areas where they can find plenty of algae.

Diet
These fish can feed on any fish they can catch. They can swallow fish, which are even double of their size. These fishes can do this because they have extremely flexible bones.

Hairy Frogfish Breeding / Reproduction
The female of these species lay eggs in the water and the male comes from behind to fertilize them. The abdomen of the female starts swelling as the egg absorbs water and this happens from 8 hours to several days before the laying of eggs. The male starts to approach the female two days before the spawning. The time of spawning is not known by the scientists clearly, that whether it depends on the phase of the moon or any signal is released by the female. The eggs of these species are around (0.5 to 1) mm. When the egg hatches, the hatchlings are of about (0.8 to 1.6) mm in length.

Threats
These fish has a characteristic of camouflage and this protects them from their enemy or predators. The predators find hard to discover them until the frogfish moves. Moreover, these fish suck water and puff their body in such a manner that the predators find it difficult to swallow them. These fishes are not over fished but the greatest threat to them is their habitat destruction and pollution.