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Ocean Pipefish Video Stock Footage
The snake pipefish has a very long, elongated and slender body which has a smooth skin and rounded cross-section and which is distinguished from other sympatric pipefishes by the near lack of bony rings. It has a long head, with a thin dark stripe in its sides, with a long, concave snout and a very small, protractile mouth. The long based dorsal fin has 37-47 short rays while the caudal fin is minute and there are no pectoral fins or anal fins. They are pale brown or yellowish-green in colour with each of the 28-31 rings on the body marked out by pale blue rings with dark margins. The opening to the gills has been reduced to a pore in the membrane above the opercle and the gill membranes are fused to the body and the isthmus. They can grow to total lengths of 40 centimetres (16 in) in males and 60 centimetres (24 in) in females, although they are more commonly around 32 centimetres (13 in) and 45 centimetres (18 in) respectively. The juveniles of less than 70 mm in length have membranous pectoral fins which disappear as they mature. They breed in mid summer when the males and females pair up. They are ovoviviparous, he female attaches over 1,000 fertilised eggs, each about 1.2 millimetres (0.047 in) in diameter, to a layer of sticky mucus in a groove on the male’s belly where they remain until they hatch. Following their birth the fry are pelagic until they attain a length of 12 millimetres (0.47 in). The adults feed on small ...
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