YouTube: BBC Earth

Mudskippers: The Weird Fish That Live Most of Their Lives on Land

The mudskipper is one of the most unusual fish on Earth.

The world's oceans are filled with all sorts of strange creatures. From the deep-sea anglerfish to mysterious, rarely seen creatures like the giant squid. There is no denying all the diversity of life that calls the oceans home.

Some of these creatures are much weirder than others. Take the mudskipper. It may be the weirdest fish swimming our planet's seas today. Not just because they have an incredibly strange appearance with their bulbous eyes and tapered body.

That is because this fish species not only can survive out of the water it thrives there. This oddity of the oceans exhibits some extremely strange behavior in this short BBC documentary. This is without a doubt, one of the weirdest fish that we have ever seen.

Fish that dig burrows in mud, battle each other for breeding rights, and use the retreating tides as a chance to feed in the muck? What a weird fish.

Just imagine being one of the first humans to ever see this species in the wild. There is probably no other fish on Earth that looks more like it came from an alien world than this one. It probably had some of the first observers completely perplexed as to what kind of creature it was. The eyes and the texture of the skin remind us of a frog, but the slim profile and fins are clearly fish-like.

In case you were wondering how they survive out of the water, this species traps water in its gill chambers that it then uses as an oxygen source. Of course, this species must be careful about drying out because they can also breath through their skin. There is also a lining in their mouth that allows them to breath, but again, only if kept moist. Still, the mudskipper spends a large portion of its life waddling around tidal flats with those pectoral fins being used like feet. Truly the mudskipper is another one of nature's wonders.

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