5 Fun Facts about Frogfish

Painted frogfish

Frogfish are found almost everywhere around the world. They are fascinating fish. This is why we are going to give you our favourite five fun facts about frogfish!

Hairy frogfish hunting
Hairy frogfish hunting

Frogfish have their own fishing rod!

Frogfish are members of the anglerfish family Antennariidae. They are also known as anglerfish. One of their dorsal spines is a lure. At the end of the lure is a bait. The bait can look like a small fish, a shrimp or a worm. In the photo above, the frogfish is wiggling its bait shaped like a worm.

The frogfish can dangle and flick its lure in front of its head. Its prey will approach thinking there’s a tasty snack to be had. Once close, the frogfish can move lightning fast. It opens up its mouth, expanding its oral cavity, creating suction and engulfs its meal.

This type of feeding is known as gape-and-suck. Frogfish have the fastest feeding of any fish. For a frogfish to gulp down its prey whole, it takes only 6 milliseconds, which is faster than a scorpionfish or a stonefish (15 milliseconds).

Did you ever see a frogfish yawn? Watch this video to a see how big the mouth of a Giant Frogfish can get!

Giant frogfish with Coralia Liveaboard in Indonesia
Giant frogfish

Frogfish are masters of camouflage!

Has a dive guide ever shown you a frogfish but you can’t see it?! It is totally amazing that a fish can be right in front of your eyes, but you still can’t see it! Giant frogfish are particularly good at this. They are usually quite large but sit so still that they look like a piece of sponge.

Even the eyes on most species of frogfish totally blend into their colour. If the piece of sponge doesn’t have eyes, then there’s nothing for the fish to be afraid of!!

Frogfish can change colour too. If an area has a predominant colour sponge, when the frogfish moves there, they can slowly change colour to blend in. They can change their colour in a matter of days or weeks.

Clown or warty frogfish, like in the photo below, are quite often found in rocky and rubbly areas. They can totally blend in with their surroundings.

Clown frogfish with Coralia Liveaboard in Indonesia
Clown frogfish
Hairy frogfish with Coralia Liveaboard in Indonesia
Hairy frogfish

Frogfish can be hairy!

The frogfish in the photo above is a hairy frogfish. Who knew fish could be hairy!! Check out this video to see a hairy frogfish eating a not so tasty worm then spitting it out!

Frogfish comes in all sorts of shapes, sizes, colours and patterns. Their lures are also different shapes and lengths. This is the best way to identify a frogfish species.

Giant frogfish swimming
Giant frogfish swimming

Frogfish can swim, kinda!

Frogfish get their name due to their likeness to frogs. But also, because if you do see them moving, they can be seen hopping along the sea floor. They can also walk using their pectoral and pelvic fins.

Frogfish don’t swim very much but they can! And it’s pretty amazing to watch! They use jet propulsion to swim! Water gets sucked in through the mouth and then pushed out through the gill openings. It works pretty well, at least for short distances. They don’t seem to have brakes, so when it comes to stopping, they just glide into position or bump into an object to stop!

Frogfish babies with Coralia Liveaboard in Raja Ampat
Frogfish babies

Frogfish carry their babies

In Raja Ampat it is possible to find the Marble-Mouthed Frogfish (Lophiocharon lithinostomus). The female of this special frogfish carries her clutch of eggs against the side of her body. Look carefully at the photo above, you can see teeny tiny baby frogfish. They are already fully formed.

The photo below is a female with a fresh batch of eggs. They are the round white splodges in the back, on the left side of the photo.

Marble mouth frogfish with eggs
Marble mouth frogfish with eggs in Raja Ampat

Look for some Frogfish in Indonesia Together with us!

With our Coralia Liveaboard we offer various cruises where we can show you frogish and lots of other fascinating marine animals. Check out our cruise schedule! You can also contact us in case you have any questions. We look forward to hearing from you!

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