Behold the paddlefish, peacefully going about its business of feeding on microscopic plankton. Like the basking shark, it swims with its mouth gaping wide open, with its gills to filter out the goodies. If it weren’t for the paddle, you might mistake it for a freshwater basking shark.
But it only looks like a paddle. It’s packed with special sense organs to help the fish find food.
Paddlefish fossils are found all over the world, but today these fish live only in the Mississippi River and some of its tributaries. Up until recently they also lived in China; but with their customary reckless disregard for just about everything, the communists have driven the Chinese paddlefish into extinction. Along with the freshwater whale… and the Chinese alligator has just about had it, too.
I would love to see one of these in person, underwater. But it ain’t gonna happen in New Jersey.
9 comments on “Mr. Nature: The Paddlefish”
That’s an interesting creature. This is the first time I’ve ever heard of them.
They are of an ancient lineage.
I caught these fish before! In an online fishing game nonetheless… 😅 Are they by any chance related to sturgeons?
I see! Also I was surprised that freshwater whales exist!
Not anymore they don’t: not in China. The communists wiped them out.
There still are some in India and South America.
Are pink dolphins among the freshwater whales?
Yes. They’re not “whales” in the everyday sense, but they are technically “small toothed whales.”
I get it! Thank you, sir! 🙂