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Slime Eels

-Guest post by ES-

Looking for a strange creature to go in your book? This one's perfect and IT ACTUALLY EXISTS!

Hagfish, or more commonly known as Slime eels, are a group of jawless soft bodied organisms that belong to the Myxinidae family. There are more than sixty different types of hagfish living in the midnight zone worldwide and not much is known about them. They have developed an extraordinary defense mechanism and are expert scavengers. I hope you will enjoy reading this post and find it very helpful.

Food:

Hagfish have an excellent sense of smell and touch but even though they have two tiny markings that could be mistaken for eyes Hagfish happen to be blind. Sight is not needed if you live in the inky blackness at the bottom of the sea, so they have adapted to the desolate landscape and have become expert scavengers. If they happen to stumble upon a dead fish, Hagfish lacking teeth have an extraordinary method of consuming their find. They use their rasping tongue to suck out a chunk of flesh and tie themselves into knots somehow moving that knot up and down their body so they can pull their head out of the fish. They do it about three or four times more to make an entrance way before eating the fish inside out.

Defence:

Hagfish have one of the most extraordinary defence mechanisms of the fish kingdom when they feel
threatened hagfish ooze sticky elastic slime made up of mucins (a substance found in saliva) and protein threads out of white slime glands on their rubbery-like skin and tie themselves into knots making them difficult for the predator to catch and eat. If the unfortunate predator happens to bite a hagfish the slime will choke it to death and the Hagfish will usually escape unharmed. This amazing reaction has kept these creatures alive since three hundred million years ago. ( some people call them “the living fossils”! ) 

Habitat:

Being scavengers Hagfish don’t have a certain place to stay, rest or even lay their eggs, so they have been found curled up in little groups in the cold murky blackness in the twilight zone at the bottom of the sea worldwide. The ocean is divided into three zones which include the sunlight zone, the twilight zone, and the midnight zone depending on how far the sunlight can reach.


Thanks for reading! 

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