Undiscovered: The Gulf of Mexico is home to New Species
Dolphins, manatees, turtles, oh my! Most everyone can recognize a number of animals that dwell in the Gulf of Mexico, especially our guests! We frequently get the chance to get up close and personal with the local wildlife, especially the well-known species of mammals, birds and reptiles. Exploring Estero Bay allows our groups to explore a hotbed of animal activity unlike anything found in other areas of Florida.
Our backyard in Fort Myers Beach is teeming with life, but truly only represents a fraction of what actually lives underneath the waves in the Gulf of Mexico. With over 15,000 species, you never know what we may come across during one of our adventures on the water, or what may be swimming close than you may think—there are even species that were discovered only this year!
An interesting looking creature, the Ceratoid anglerfish was discovered just a few months ago in October 2015. Pulled from one of the deepest regions of the gulf—the Midnight Zone. This angler, unlike any other known species truly lives up to its name. With what looks like a fishing pole sprouting from its back, this angler lures its prey the same way that many gulf fisherman do.
Not quite Jaws, the Pocket Shark was discovered in April 2015 and definitely lives up to its name. The last time a Pocket Shark was recorded was 36 years ago off the coast of Peru. At only 5.5 inches long, this dare I say cute shark has two unique pockets, similar to a kangaroo on the front end of its body. Scientists are unsure what these pockets are used for.
When coming out on one of our tours or fishing charters, prepare for the unexpected. Science proves that we should never assume we know exactly what we may see, so keep your eyes wide open and don’t forget to bring a camera!