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Fish #47 Slender Snipe Eel Nemichthys scolopaceus ~ Frances Clayton
Watercolour, gouache and acrylic ink. 38 x 28 cm.
A DEEP SEA PREDATOR
Scientific name: Nemichthys scolopaceus
Size: up to 1.5m (5ft). Weighs less than 100g (3.5 oz).
Habitat: from the surface to thousands of meters.
Eats: shrimps, using its long bird like beak to sweep through the water to catch them.
Reproduction: broadcast spawning. It is believed to spawn just once and then die.
Lifespan: 10 years
Interesting facts: has more vertebrae than any other species - up to 750. Its anus is on its throat.
The Slender Snipe Eel
Five feet long and very wriggly
Yummy shrimp I like to eat
Vertebra times seven fifty
One hundred grams is just my weight.
Near the surface, in the depths
All around the world I wriggle
For ten long years both day and night
Then spawn just once and die.
No one wants me for my beauty
No one wants me on their table
In no danger of extinction
But vital to the eco-system.
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