I'm excited to let you know that we've got a copy of the stunning Oceans DVD to give away. So read on to find out how you could be checking out some of the most amazing animals under the sea.
Don't you agree, there's something nice about watching fish swim? You know at first glance it's easy to believe there isn't too much thinking going on upstairs in fish, but keep watching and it's amazing how you start to notice how each animal has her own personality and quirks.
A lot of people seem to find watching fish calming -- or more precisely, see fish as a calming 'decoration'. Why else would so many houses and offices install fish tanks, and why else would Google offer this very cute gadget (below). But to be honest, I much prefer watching fish swim in their natural environment -- not a fish tank. And not surprisingly, it turns out fish prefer this too.
Researchers recently compared the behaviour of fish in the wild; in a large artificial 'stream' in a zoo; and in smaller tanks used by pet owners. What they found is that the smaller the tank, and the less 'complex' (ie. no rocks, plants, hiding places, etc) the tank was the more aggressive the fish became -- sometimes even escalating to nipping and attacking other fish.
When you think about it, it's not really that surprising. If you put me in a small empty room, I'd be pretty annoyed as well. Obviously, like us fish feel pain. And when you consider all the other amazing things scientists have discovered about fish, it makes sense that they might experience boredom and frustration too.
For example, did you know that fish communicate with each other using squeaks and squeals that you and I can only hear with special instruments? Or that in some species the older fish teach the youngens -- about things like predators, and even to recognise the sound of trawling boats. Or that some fish use tools... such as stingsrays working out how to extract food from plastic tubes by shooting jets of water; or blackspot tuskfish using a rock to open a clam's shell.
And don't even get me started on how cool cuttlefish are (although technically they're not a fish)! Ahem ... I guess what I'm trying to say is: Sea animals is pretty amazing! And there's a whole lot more going on upstairs in the animals that live down below than we often give them credit for.
Oceans DVD Giveaway!
The Disney doco, Oceans, is about to be released on DVD and we have a copy that could be yours. All you need to do to enter is leave a comment below and tell us one good reason people should care about fish.
UPDATE You guys are all so awesome for knowing how awesome fish are! These responses are all fabulous! Unfortunately there can only be one winner ..... And the DVD goes to *drumroll* Liz2! Well done Liz! And massive THANK YOUs to everyone for entering!