News @ CSIRO

Nananananananana batfish! Pancake batfish that is.

The Louisiana pancake batfish is a newly discovered species native to the Gulf of Mexico. It was only just before the big oil spill in 2010 when these cool critters were first found. Unfortunately the fate of their population following the disaster is not yet known.

It’s no surprise where the name pancake batfish comes from. These funny looking fish have flat bodies with an enlarged head and trunk which form a round disc shape. They are small enough to fit in the palm of your hand and are about as thick as a fluffy pancake (probably not as tasty though).

And if you thought turtles were awkward, you haven’t seen these guys move. Pancake batfish have small foot-like fins, complete with elbows, which are used to ‘walk’ along the ocean floor in a bizarre motion – kind of like a crawling bat. Needless to say…

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