Walking Fish! Meet The Mudskipper!

Ever heard of walking fish or fish that can walk on land or even fly? Nature can leave you spellbound with its extraordinarily miraculous creatures. Meet the mudskippers, a strange breed of fish that can swim in water, walk on land and fly in the air!

fish that can fly - mudskipper
Photo Credits:0095.info

Fish that walks on land – Mudskipper

gambian_mudskippers
By Bjørn Christian Tørrissen [GFDL or CC BY-SA 4.0-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Mudskippers are amphibious fish meaning they live on land as well as in water. They have modified pectoral fins (in the upper part of their bodies) which they use as legs, to walk in shallow water and on land. They spend most of their time on land, returning to the water only to store water periodically in their gills. You can find these little creatures perched on mangrove roots. They can grow as long as 4 inches to 12 inches long.

Where are Mudskippers found?

They usually inhabit swampy land like mangroves and river estuaries. In India you can see these walking fish in the mangroves of Sunder bans. Mudskippers can also be seen in other places around the globe as in West Africa, Polynesian islands, Japanese coasts, Philippines and Australia.

Fish that can fly

Flying_fish_mudskipper
By Charles Lam from Hong Kong, China (I Can Fly) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Can you imagine fish flying? Well, Mudskippers can fly too! They can actually flip in the air up to a height of 2 feet using their muscular bodies.

These remarkable creatures even fight to defend their territories! A mudskipper calls its opponent for a duel by raising the fin on its back.

So how do they breathe?

Mudskippers breathe with their gills as normal fish do when in water. Before going on land, they have this marvelous ability to store water in their gill chambers. They can also breathe thru their moist skin as amphibians do.

Check out this exclusive documentary by Planet Doc on mudskippers. Kids will find it very interesting.