What is a Moses fish?


Quick Answer

The Moses sole, or Pardichirus marmoratus, is a fish native to the western Indian Ocean and the Persian Gulf. Reaching a maximum of 12 inches in length, the species prefers sand or mud bottoms near reefs, and feeds on bottom-living invertebrates at water depths of 3 to 45 feet.

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Full Answer

Also known as the finless sole, the Moses is widely known for secreting a bitter, toxic substance from the bases of the dorsal and anal fin rays that deters predation, even among much larger fish and sharks. The milky substance contains pardaxin, a toxin that causes severe plasma membrane disruption among predators, resulting in cell leakage.

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