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Spotted Ratfish Video Stock Footage

The spotted ratfish has a very distinct appearance compared to unrelated fish species. The female is up to 38 in (97 cm) long, much bigger than the male. These fish have a smooth and scaleless skin that is a silvery-bronze color, often with sparkling shades of gold, blue, and green. The speckled. white spots along their backs contribute to their name. Dark edges outline both the caudal and dorsal fins, whereas the pectoral fins have a transparent outline. Their pectoral fins are large and triangular, and extend straight out from the sides of their bodies like airplane wings. They have a venomous spine located at the leading edge of their dorsal fin, which is used in defense. It does not present a serious danger to humans, but can cause painful wounds and has been known to kill harbor seals that ate spotted ratfish (caused by the spine penetrating vital tissue in the stomach or esophagus after the ratfish was swallowed). The tail of the ratfish constitutes almost half of its overall length and closely resembles a pointed, rat-like tail. The body of this fish is supported by cartilage rather than bone. It has a duckbill-shaped snout and a rabbit-like face. The mouth is small and contains one pair of forward-directed, incisor-shaped teeth in the bottom jaw and two pairs in the top jaw. Unlike sharks, which have sharp teeth that are easily replaceable, spotted ratfish teeth are plate-shaped, mineralized, and permanent, which assist them in grinding their prey. Like ...

Learn more about Spotted Ratfish

Animalia: Chordata: Chimaeriformes: Holocephali: Chimaeridae: Hydrolagus colliei

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