Hagfish ties itself in a knot


14 Responses to “Hagfish ties itself in a knot”

  1. Amphigorey says:

    Hagfish make the best Valentine cards.

  2. chdunk says:

    how would you bite off a piece of rotting meat if you didn’t have jaws?

  3. EH says:

    What is that disgusting slime?

  4. Calimecita says:

    Thanks for the heads-up, Maggie!
    I think Hagfish Day is especially relevant this year, when they have been welcomed back into the Vertebrates (with Philippe Janvier’s blessing).

  5. Hagfish facts from Wikipedia:

    Hagfish have cartilaginous skulls and no spines.
    Hagfish secrete gill-clogging slime (seen in video) to evade predators
    Hagfish slime is microfibrous when secreted and expands into thick goo when it combines with sea water
    An adult hagfish can turn a five-gallon bucket of sea water into solid slime in minutes
    Scientists think they tie themselves in knots to clean the slime off and get away from predators
    They also use the knot behavior to gain mechanical advantage and pull hunks of flesh off carrion or prey
    Once they tear a big enough hole, they dive into their pray to dine from the inside out
    Hagfish can absorb dissolved organic matter through their skin
    Hagfish are usually found in large clusters on the sea floor
    Hagfish slime is used like egg whites in some cuisines 
    Some hagfish are very tasty when stir fried

  6. Hagfish teach tape worms how to be gross.

  7. moz moz says:

    I think what chdunk was saying was that the knot is how the beasty is able to get something to .. uh .. leverage itself against so it can pull the flesh away off the meal.

  8. IamInnocent says:

    Say what you want hagfish got talent !

  9. Shibi_SF says:

    Hagfish are like prehistoric beasties from outer space! 

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