The Top 5 Ugliest Fish in the World

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There may be plenty of fish in the sea, but not all of them are pretty. With over 200.000 different species it’s only natural that some of them are hideous. Here are the top 5 ugliest fish. 

Number 5:  The Lumpsucker/Henfish


Found lurking at the bottom of the cool waters of the Arctic, North Atlantic, and North Pacific ocean is the Lumpsucker. 

Although lumpsuckers are cute as babies, they tend to grow up to look something like this… Sometimes referred to as the Henfish, the Lumpsucker is typically 1-2 feet long with a asymmetrical, blob-like body with protruded eyes. And while most fish have a narrow frame, the Lumpsucker tends to be more spherical. They also have skin instead of scales along with a giant dorsal fin. 

Although the lumpsucker may not be a great swimmer, they have impressive endurance and can travel up to 60 miles. Their diet consists mostly of smaller fish, crustaceans, worms, and jellyfish. 

Fun fact: The male’s stomach turns red during mating and the eggs of the female (aka roe) are a popular alternative to caviar. 

Number 4: Snailfish


Snailfish, sometimes referred to as Sea Snails, pretty much look like giant tadpoles. They have a large head with small eyes and an elongated body, which resembles an eel. Like the Lumpsucker, this fish also has skin instead of scales.

Surprisingly little is known about the snailfish. There are over 410 different species each being different from the rest.

  • Some live in shallow water, while others live in the deepest parts of the ocean.
  • Some are 2 inches long, while others are 30 inches long.
  • Some live in warm water, others live in cold.
  • Some are smooth, some are prickly.
  • Some have a strict diet, others eat anything they can.

You get the idea…

But all of them are but pretty ugly and they don’t taste great either, fisherman consider them pests.

Number 3: The Goblin Shark

By Dianne Bray / Museum Victoria –, CC BY 3.0 au,

While it may sounds and look like something out of a bad science fiction novel, the Goblin Shark is in fact real and it certainly lives up to it’s name.

The image you are seeing is not photoshopped, the shark actually does look like the offspring of a goblin and a shark.

It has a long protruded snout which contains over 50 creepy nail-like teeth and a jaw that extends outward when biting. The skin is an unappealing pinkish white, almost as if it was never fully developed.

No only does the goblin shark look and sound creepy, but it acts creepy too! It’s a deep sea bottom dweller, meaning it is found in the deepest and darkest parts of the ocean, 4200 feet below, in pitch black. It’s also considered a “slow moving species”, which it basically means that it’s constantly lurking.

Like other sharks, it senses its prey using Electro sensitive organs and uses its extending jaw to snap out for a quick capture. 

This shark is unlike any other shark, it is a unique species with a lineage dating back 125 million years ago and it’s not related to the ones on earth today.

Overall very little is known about goblin shark, mostly because it’s a deep sea creature and humans rarely come in contact with them. But we don’t even know how they mate, a pregnant goblin shark has never been discovered…for all we know it spawns!

Number 2: The Gulper Eel


Coming in at number 2 on our list is the gulper eel, aka pelican eel. The fish is technically not an eel, but it’s about the closet thing that it resembles. It can be found at depths over 9000 feet below sea level or almost 2 miles deep. Even for the deep sea, this is one of the oddest creatures that has ever been discovered. 

The fish is dark black in color and can grow up to 31 inches long, but the most notable feature of the Gulper Eel is it’s unusually large mouth which acts as a net to capture prey. The fish also has a stomach capable of stretching which allows for it to consume prey larger than itself. 

The Gulper Eel is known to not be a very good swimmer, but a small luminous organ at the end of it’s tail acts as a light to help lure and capture prey. 

Not much is known about this strange creature due to the depths of it’s habitat, but we’re pretty confident that it looks weird. 

Number 1: The Blobfish

And finally, number 1 on our list: the Blobfish. You’ve likely seen random photos online of this atrocity and may have dismissed them as being photoshopped, but the photos are real and the blob fish actually does look like this, but here’s the catch: it only looks like this out of water.

The truth is, we don’t actually know what blobfish looks like in it’s natural environment because the fish is extremely rare and lives at depths over 4000 feet below. And water pressure at this depth is about 100 times stronger than that on land. Because the fish has no skeletal structure, not even teeth, the blobfish becomes heavily, perhaps even morbidly, disfigured when brought to land.

Although we’re not certain what the Blobfish actually looks like in the deep sea, it’s likely safe to assume from the pictures that it’s probably still pretty ugly. 

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