Marine biologists have found that young clownfish often travel more than 250 miles in search of a new reef.
Nemo, we know you’re out there—and in reality too. Who would’ve thought some contrived idea of great oceanic travel done by a fictional fish in a motion picture would end-up garnering scientific backing?
I, for one, wouldn’t had given that idea a second glance.
The video below explains the study that lead to this ground-breaking realization.
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And at just a few millimeters in length—no larger than a piece of white-grain rice—the larval clownfish (Amphiprion sp. and Premnas biaculeatus) begin their seaward odyssey, very-much-so aided by oceanic currents.
And while science has known that colonies of clownfish consisted of genetically diverse kin, we weren’t aware of how far those foreigners truly traveled—and it’s hundreds of miles.
This study is the first to directly measure long-distance dispersal [of clownfish larvae] over hundreds of kilometers.
—Stephen Simpson, a marine biologist at the U.K.’s University of Exeter
Clownish are among the most heavily trafficked of all marine fauna, and—due to wild-caught harvesting from the demand placed on by the tropical fish hobby— have seen major declines in population counts.
Bruce, the pescetarianism protesting shark from Finding Nemo, said it best: “Fish are friends, not food.” Or disposable aquarium decor, for that matter.