The intense invertebrate life on Browning Wall is so thick and prolific and colourful that you cannot see the underlying rock at all. Until you’ve actually seen the brilliant reds, oranges, yellows, whites and all the amazing colours of the soft corals and other inverts, it is almost impossible to imagine how fantastic coldwater diving is. The tiny pinnacle of Dillon Rock is a story onto itself with 6+ wolfeels hiding in cracks and crevices, numerous giant pacific octopus, rarely sighted vermillion rockfish, a lovely kelp forest at the west side of the rock teeming with black rockfish, and dozens of chimera (ratfish in the shark family) cruising around on the sand bottom just off the rock. Great diving and a lovely day was had by all. Even the black bears cooperated with multiple beach appearances.Read More
Is the Male Sex Organ of a Ratfish on it’s Forehead or Not?
- Post author By Nautilus Staff
- Post date 2008-06-08
I have to state for the record that I stand corrected on all the scuba diving briefings that I have given on this site over the years. Ratfish are indeed a member of the shark “family” as I thought. My mistake was in thinking that the sexual organ of the male ratfish is on it’s forehead (which kind of makes sense in a bit of a twisted way). There is definitely “something” that extends and retracts on the forehead of male ratfish but it turns out to be a “third clasper.” Like other sharks and rays, the male ratfish has 2 claspers underneath and close to their stern. Unlike any other cartilaginous fish, the ratfish has a 3rd clasper on it’s forehead that it apparently uses to latch on to the pectoral fin of a female during mating. One of the guests on this trip has the photographic evidence that clearly shows this. I stand corrected – the male ratfish has a clasper used to facilitate sex on it’s forehead. The sharks’ sexual organ is in the regular place.Read More