An Australian beachgoer was left perplexed by a strange “fish” she saw in the sand over the weekend.
The woman was walking along a beach in Byron Bay when she noticed a large tooth-shaped object washed ashore.
Many were puzzled as to what the mysterious find could be before it was identified as the porcupine fish’s swim bladder.
‘Does anyone know what the hell this is? “I found it yesterday on the beach, it’s about 30 centimeters long, it’s soft,” he asked in a Facebook post.
People shared their guesses and one thought it was the lung of a sea creature; another was surprised by how big it was.
An Australian woman was left baffled after finding a strange object washed up on a beach near Byron Bay. She said it was 12 inches long and “soft.”
‘Whale tooth,’ one user responded and a second joked: ‘Shark bully bag.
30 cm is huge…!! You surely mean millimeters? a woman exclaimed.
“My ex-girlfriends are heartbroken,” another joked.
Some thought it was part of a children’s beach toy and others assumed it could have been a flotation device before a man named Matt gave the real explanation.
“It is the gas bladder of a porcupine fish (often called the spiny puffer fish or burr fish). The gas bladder (also called the swim bladder) is a flexible-walled, gas-filled sac located in the dorsal portion of the cavity of the body,” he explained.
«It controls the buoyancy of fish and, in some species, is important for hearing. Most of the gas bladder is not permeable to gases because it is poorly vascularized (has few blood vessels) and is lined by sheets of guanine crystals.’
The mysterious find was identified as the swim bladder of a porcupine fish. It helps fish adapt to water pressure when swimming in the deep sea without floating up or sinking.
The swim bladder helps fish adapt to water pressure when swimming in the deep sea without floating up or sinking.
Many were impressed with Matt’s knowledge, but others wondered why the organ would wash up on the shore on its own.
‘The question is, how did it come out of the fish?’ someone wondered and another asked: ‘Why has he separated from his fish?’
“The bacteria will most likely digest it and release gas,” Matt responded.
“The reason the bladder is on shore could be anything from someone gutting the fish at sea to it dying of natural causes and parts like the gas bladder surviving and washing ashore.”