Updated September 12, 2017
Looking for a unique species to add to your tank? Consider the archerfish, a fish with the ability to shoot bugs off of branches with a stream of water.
Aquarium fish come in all shapes, sizes, and colors. While many fish set themselves apart from the rest of the pack by their appearance, the archerfish is unique in a different way. These brackish water fish can actually shoot water from their mouths to knock insects off overhanging leaves or branches into the water. Keep reading to learn more about these fascinating fish!
Basic Information About Archerfish
Also known as spinner fish, archerfish are a small family of seven species belonging to the genus Toxotes. There are several things which set this group of fish apart from other aquarium fish. First, they are a brackish species – they typically inhabit estuaries and mangrove swamps. They can, however, be found in the open ocean or far upstream in fresh water. These fish are native to various parts of India as well as Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Australia, Polynesia, and the Philippines.
The second thing that sets archerfish apart is their ability to shoot water droplets from their mouths to knock insects of low-hanging leaves and branches above the water. According to an article published in National Geographic, archerfish exhibit this behvaior with stunning accuracy and the strength of the jet is so powerful that, if it were to hit you, you’d feel like you’d been stung by an insect. In order to shoot water with the force and accuracy needed, archerfish actually change the shape of their mouths, adjusting it to hone in on their target as they spray,...