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Seasick Fish?

I just read this story in the news about a German scientist named Dr. Hilbig who claims to have proved that fish can get seasick. He came to this stunning conclusion after putting forty-nine fish in a small aquarium, sending them up in an airplane, and then sending that plane into a steep dive, simulating the loss of gravity.

Apparently, eight of the fish started spinning around in circles. “They were behaving like humans who get seasick,” Dr. H. claims. “They became…confused and looked as if they were going to vomit.”

Okay, so I’m impressed the guy knows how to read a fish’s facial expression, but, I have to say, if I were in a plane that suddenly plummeted towards earth, I have no doubt that I, too, would go into a tailspin and vomit, but I’m not sure I’d call it ‘seasickness.’ The real mystery is why the other forty-one fish remained calm.

Smartypants Hilbig posits that “In the wild such ‘seasick’ fish would become prey for others because they are incapable of fleeing from danger.” But my guess is that the fish were already incapable of that, or they wouldn’t have been passengers on Flight Nosedive.

Adding insult to injury (or actually injury to insult), the eight flustered fish later had their brains examined to determine the exact cause of their ‘seasickness.’ If you ask me, someone does indeed need to have their head examined, but it ain’t the fish.


5 Responses
  1. Scot says:

    I am actually fascinated by the idea of fish barf. Sorry to be so vulgar, but really! It has just never occurred to me that they could do that.

  2. Lloyd says:

    How funny is that? You rock Jessica, I don’t know where you get these tidbits but I love them, you make me laugh. Hey I saw you the other day on cable, ‘the minority report’ was on; I have it somewhere on dvd too. Cheers.

  3. Joe says:

    Put me in plane nose diving and I will vomit also. In the case of the fish they most likely thought it was a underwater quake. Is It possible there were just to many fish in so little an aquarium. When too many of anything don’t know why or for what reason they are put in a mix, surely there will be some confusion and therefore sickness. Opps my fish just vomited

  4. suzanne says:

    First of all, fish can totally barf. I’ve seen it. It’s not pretty.
    Second, how do these fish manage when flushed down a toilet? It seems to me, that’s the big question and may be well worth the thousands of research dollars that were most likely spent on their “airfare”….

  5. Michael Rich says:

    Sounds pretty fishy to me! Remind me never to get on a plane with that guy.

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