Marine surveys off the coast of Scotland have captured a glimpse of the rarely seen amphixious — a brainless, faceless fish considered to be one of the first creatures to evolve a backbone over half a billion years ago. Instead of a brain, the fish’s essential functions are controlled simply through its spinal cord.
The fish has a primitive spinal chord and appears to have scales, but lacks fins. So what we have folks is a brainless, faceless and finless critter on our hands. It doesn’t seem to have a lot going for it, so what do we know about it?
The answer is we don’t know much. Presumably scientists need to learn more about the amphixious since it is so rare. Reports didn’t indicate how it eats, moves or breeds — all things I’m darn curious about now that I’ve seen him…her… it. I’m hoping plans are in place to study the amphixious further.
The shy, prehistoric link was found during surveys of the Orkney Islands, a 70-island chain off the coast of Scotland. Scientists used acoustic scanners and high definition cameras to get a picture of the wildlife that might be lurking at the depths that can reach up to 200 feet in depth.
Other rare finds from the survey included giant mussels with shells over 18 inches wide, brightly colored flame shells, and the Northern Feather Star with 10 feather like arms coming out of one central disk.
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