We all know takeout food sometimes requires special utensils to be eaten properly. The same is true for fish. (The food they're eating, not takeout fish.) Below, behold the first video of a reef fish using a tool — and traveling a great distance to find it.
The orange-dotted tuskfish, a species of wrasse, is the second type of wrasse documented using tools in the past few months. A blackspot tuskfish was caught on camera earlier this year; now the first video has been published.
The fish digs around in the sand to find a choice clam, picks it up, then swims for a while until it finds a good rock. It proceeds to throw the clam against said rock to open it. This is a fish, remember — not the type of creature you might expect to see using tools. Dolphins, elephants, rats, sure — but a fish?
"It requires a lot of forward thinking, because there are a number of steps involved. For a fish, it's a pretty big deal," said Giacomo Bernardi, professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of California, Santa Cruz, who shot the video.
The fact that this behavior has been seen in other fish indicates it may not be a recent evolution, but a deep-seated behavioral trait in wrasses — and maybe other fishes, too.
"Do not offer sympathy to the mentally ill.
Tell them firmly:
I am not paid to listen to this drivel.
You are a terminal boob." - William S. Burroughs
It is very cool to see more and more documented events of "Animal cognition" and in the "lower species" as well.
Playing Devil's Advocate since 1978
"The only constant in the universe is change"
-Heraclitus of Ephesus 535 BC - 475 BC
It seems these little fishes have been watching the dolphins with the Conch shells.
reminds me when i was a kid a worked at a marina picking up, docking, trailering boats, moving them around on the forklift in and out of the water and in and out of the storage racks... the seagulls were horrific for crapping on the customers boats but knew to wait around for tourists to show up for gas and throw them bread.. they'd hang out on the metal roof of the storage buildings. When we'd see them start to gather we'd throw a rock up on the roof, it'd make a huge echoing bang... about halfway through the summer this on seagull with a fishing lure stuck in it's beak started picking up stones from the yard and dropping them from high above to scare the others away.... then by the end of the summer he'd do it precisely when a boat would approach the bay, he'd figured out that if he scared the rest of them away then if there was food to be had ( a kid throwing french fries usually) then it was all his.
years i worked there and only ever that one bird, that one summer ever did it. even after thousands of rocks i had thrown for them all to observe.