Please help! Not sure if dead or alive

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akimbo

Registered Member
Jan 16, 2017
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Hi,

I remember going to the aquarium when I was a little kid and seeing a fish that looked dead and like it was decaying in one of the tanks. The image is still stuck in my head many years later. Concerned, my parents showed an aquarium staff member, and they said that the fish naturally looked like that, and shrugged us off. I've tried researching the fish but I've come up with nothing. Now I wonder if the fish was actually dead and no one had noticed until we mentioned something. I'm unsure of the kind of fish it was, but I remember it was in the same tank as the lionfish. The "dead" fish was somewhat large, probably the size of an adult's hand, and it was sitting upright on a coral, completely still. Its mouth gaped open and it was white, and it looked fleshy, like it was decaying or something. Can anyone identify what that might have been? For years I've wondered if the haunting appearance of that fish was just itself camouflaging or if it was in fact dead.
 

Tifftastic

"With your powers combined . . ."
Sep 9, 2008
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Tiff
I'm not too familiar with marine fish, but having worked in a pet store and heard some of the things that people told customers when there was a dead fish in the feeder fish tank . . . the fish was probably dead and the employee didn't want to alarm you or your family.
 

OrionGirl

No freelancing!
Aug 14, 2001
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Poconos
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Sheila
I'd guess it was a species of stone fish. There are many of them that match your description and the behavior. They also have poisonous spines, similar to lion fish.
 
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