We've had some quirky little newcomers join the Aquarium's living collection this past month - make sure you check out these weird and wonderful fish and invertebrates on your next visit.

Bellows fish

All the way from Tristan da Cunha, these new bellows fish (Notopogon spp.) are odd indeed! Their huge eyes and long snouts allow them to use suction to perfectly target their tiny prey - zooplankton. 

Photo by Jessica Sloan/Two Oceans Aquarium.

Serpent-skinned brittle stars

Brittle stars are a close relative of sea stars, sacrificing their strength for dexterity. And yes, they do look like aliens!

These brittle stars (Ophioderma wahlbergii) have special brood chambers in their arms. The juvenile brittle stars are brooded in these chambers until they emerge as fully formed, miniature brittle stars.

White sea catfish

Catfish are not an animal we commonly think of as sea creatures, most species are freshwater. But a few, like these adorable white sea catfish (Galeichthys feliceps), bring their whiskery business to the oceans - much to our delight.

Photo by Devon Bowen/Two Oceans Aquarium


The beautiful redfingers (Cheilodactylus fasciatus) are bottom-dwelling predators. They use their large pectoral fins to "stand" on the bottom of the sea, sitting dead still while waiting to ambush their next meal. We are always grateful for an animal that's willing to pose for a photo!

Photo by D. Warmerdam.

Crystal jelly

What is the biggest hydrozoan (the family of animals that includes bluebottles) on Earth? Our new crystal jellies (Aequorea forskalea) of course!

Photo by Devon Bowen/Two Oceans Aquarium.

Although not rare, like the pink meanie which joined us temporarily last year, crystal jellies are unusual as they are not a "true jellyfish" of the Scyphozoa family - come check them out!


This little piggy (Pomadasys olivaceus) doesn't go to market, but has found a spot close to our hearts.

Photo by Michael Farquhar/Two Oceans Aquarium.

It is one of the smallest species of grunts in the world - and is certainly dwarfed by the spotted grunters that you have come to know and love already.

Cape mantis shrimp

The Cape mantis shrimp (Pterygosquilla armata capensis) is the only species of mantis shrimp occurring off the West Coast. These shrimps live in burrows which they hollow out in soft sediments - hiding from the seals, hake and other fishes which prey on them.

Photo by D. Warmerdam.

Which of this month's newcomers is your favourite? Let us know on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook!

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