Flying Gurnard Dactylopterus volitans

Flying Gurnard
Flying Gurnard
The Flying Gurnard is native to coasts both sides of the Atlantic Ocean, from temperate to tropical waters. The Flying Gurnard is a name also given to the family of Dactylopteridae including genus of Dactylopterus (only this one species), and the Indo-Pacific genus of Dactyloptena, so that an alternative name of Helmet Gurnard is sometimes used for this fish.
Flying Gurnard
Flying Gurnard
Flying Gurnard
The Flying Gurnard is a most amazing fish with four unusual traits: it flies (underwater), it has electric violet wings, it has "Lying Eyes" and it walks on the seabed.
Flying Gurnard
Flying Gurnard
Flying Gurnard
Above shows how the fish "flies" through the water with its pectoral fins like wings.
Flying Gurnard - shame about the mullet
Flying Gurnard
Flying Gurnard
In additon to its turquoise spots, it has iridescent violet-blue edges, spots and lines to its wings which light up under stress or excitement. The wings can open as a couple of large semi-circles.
Flying Gurnard
Flying Gurnard
Flying Gurnard
It has false but realistic eyes at the front of its face to confuse predators, - its real eyes being at the sides of its head.
Flying Gurnard
Flying Gurnard
Flying Gurnard
In addition to the "Lying Eyes", it has an "Amazing Face" with prominent teeth.
Flying Gurnard
Flying Gurnard
Flying Gurnard
It is not directly related to the Tub, Red or Streaked Gurnard families (the sea-robins). They say it is closely related to seahorses and pipefish!
Flying Gurnard
Flying Gurnard
Flying Gurnard
It also walks on the seabed using its pelvic and anal fins as feet while it looks for crustaceans and bivalves to supplement its small fish diet. They also hold group meetings.
Flying Gurnard
Flying Gurnard
Flying Gurnard
Juveniles are red.