This article unveils a surprising fact about male pufferfish who make beautiful underwater circles to attract their fish mate. Long before, there was found a beautiful circular pattern on the seafloor.
It dates back to 1995 when some divers spotted a beautiful and odd circular pattern on the seafloor off the coast of Japan. Shortly after, there were more such circles nearby.
These patterns were considered “underwater crop circles”. No one knew what caused the geometric shapes to appear and disappear for over a decade.
Finally, a team of Japanese scientists revealed the source of these beautiful structures in 2011. They discovered the creator species Torquigener pufferfish. Their further research resolved the mystery that these little male pufferfish make beautiful underwater circles.
Male pufferfish swim along the seafloor swaying their fins and causing fragmented sediment and beautiful circular patterns. Although fish are just around 12 centimeters long, the formations they create have a diameter of roughly 2 meters.
According to Japanese researcher, Hiroshi Kawase, female fish come to view the rings once they complete. They breed with the males if they like what they make. But no one understands what these female fish look for or what characteristics they find desirable.
The circles can take up to nine days to build. Once completed, female fish gather to inspect them. If the ladies like what they see, they will lay eggs in the circle center for the males to fertilize.
So, researchers have not found any practical or adaptive use for the circles. It shows that the females have an interest in the aesthetic attractiveness of geometric shapes.
There is also a possibility that the females may have only interest in the fine sand, not the beautiful patterns or symmetry of the formations. The lovely lines and structure may only direct those particles to the center and serve no aesthetic purpose.
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