Remora Facts

Remora Facts
Remora, also known as suckerfish or shark sucker, belongs to the family of ray-finned fish. There are 8 species of remoras that can be found in the tropical waters around the world. Remora is pelagic fish (it does not live close to the bottom or shore) that prefers life on the open sea. It can be found on depth of 328 feet. Number of remoras in the wild is large and stable. These fish are not on the list of endangered species.
Interesting Remora Facts:
Remora can reach from 0.98 to 2.95 feet in length.
Remora is dark brown or black colored.
Remora has long, flattened head and short body covered with smooth scales.
Remora has oval sucking disk on top of the head that consists of numerous paired, crosswise oriented plates. Sucking disk is actually modified dorsal fin.
Remora has numerous small, pointed teeth that are slightly curved inward. Lower jaw is longer than upper jaw.
Remora does not have swimming bladder. It uses sucking disk to attach itself to the body of other fish or marine creatures and to travel in the ocean. This technique also ensures swift movement of water through the gills that is vital for the normal breathing.
Depending on the species, remora can travel attached to the body of sharks, rays, swordfishes, marlins, sea turtles or large marine mammals such as dugongs and whales.
Remora eats leftovers of its host's meals and collects parasites, bacteria and dead, epidermal tissue from the surface of the skin. That way remora keeps the skin of its host clean and healthy.
Some species of remora live inside the mouth of large sharks and rays. They eat bacteria and scraps of food.
Remoras are able to attach themselves to the bottom of the ships or to the legs and abdomen of scuba divers.
Mating season of remoras takes place from June to July in the Atlantic ocean and from August to September in Mediterranean.
Young remoras look like miniature version of adults. They start to develop sucking disc at the length of 0.4 inches and complete its development at the length 1.2 inches.
Latin name "remora" means "holding back" or "delay". Name refers to the ancient belief that remoras were responsible for death of Roman emperor Caligula by holding the bottom of the ship and preventing the Romans to fight against enemy ships.
Fishermen often use remoras for capturing the fish and sea turtles. They attach the fishing line to the remora's tail, release the fish into the water and wait until it attaches to the shell of sea turtle or to the body of some large fish. Both animals then need to be carefully pulled out of the water.
Lifespan of remoras in the wild is unknown.

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