- First of all, the Coffinfish, also known as the Chaunax endeavouri, represents a rather unique looking sea toad. This unusual and strangely named species belongs to the Chaunacidae Family.
- For the moment, this rather distinctive looking fish remains less known than related species. Furthermore, it also shares its Family with the perhaps better-known anglerfish.
- Presently, detailed information about this particular ocean denizen remains rather scarce. This occurs due to the nature of its specific habitat, which we will discuss later.
- One known fact of interest is that it shares a defensive technique with varieties of pufferfish, like the White Spotted Puffer. When threatened, it fills its body with water, greatly enlarging itself.
- Also, and amazingly, the fish actually uses two of its fins to walk along the floor of the ocean. It therefore represents one of only a handful of fish known to have evolved this particular ability.
Coffinfish Physical Description
Firstly the Coffinfish remains popular for its unique appearance in that it resembles a pink balloon. Its bright pink coloring forms a distinctive feature and its body also has a covering of numerous tiny spines.
In addition, for no reason that scientists can determine, the inside of the over-sized mouth is black. This unusual pattern seems to simply be a random pattern of evolution, with no special use.
The majority of individuals generally attain a known body length of roughly 8.7 in (22 cm). However, exceptional individuals occasionally attain much larger sizes. No noticeable degree of sexual dimorphism appears in the species.
As a species of anglerfish, it also possesses a small lure to attract prey. However, in the Coffinfish, this remains relatively small in size. When not in active use, this lure is tucked into a small groove on the snout.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Actinopterygii
- Order: Lophiformes
- Family: Chaunacidae
- Genus: Chaunax
- Species: C. endeavouri
Coffinfish Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
It must be noted that the surprising Coffinfish evolved as a primarily benthic species of ocean fish. Furthermore, the creature appears to primarily be native to the portions of the southwestern Pacific Ocean.
Further, the majority of its currently known population lives off of the east coast of Australia. There, the Coffinfish also apparently prefers the deep waters along the continental shelf and slope.
This rather startling animal also spends the greatest portion of its time lying silently on the ocean floor. It prefers depths between 900-1,00 ft (274-305 m) but can live in areas as shallow as 165 ft (50 m).