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   Undertoad  Thursday May 14 09:36 PM

May 15, 2015: Opah



You thought we had figured everything out. Well no. Here is the first known species of fully warm-blooded fish, the opah.

Quote:
Fish that typically inhabit such cold depths tend to be slow and sluggish, conserving energy by ambushing prey instead of chasing it. But the opah’s constant flapping of its fins heats its body, speeding its metabolism, movement and reaction times, scientists report today in the journal Science.

That warm-blooded advantage turns the opah into a high-performance predator that swims faster, reacts more quickly and sees more sharply, said fisheries biologist Nicholas Wegner of NOAA Fisheries’ Southwest Fisheries Science Center in La Jolla, Calif., lead author of the new paper.

“Before this discovery I was under the impression this was a slow-moving fish, like most other fish in cold environments,” Wegner said. “But because it can warm its body, it turns out to be a very active predator that chases down agile prey like squid and can migrate long distances.”
The opah has a weird radiator-like system of blood vessels. Vessels that get oxygen from the gills come back cold, because they have to get that oxygen from the surrounding water. The opah has developed warmer blood vessels that wrap around these colder ones, in a strategy to warm them up quickly.

It gives them a remarkable advantage! Now that we've learned how special the species is, what will we do with it?

Quote:
The opah’s rich meat has become increasingly popular in seafood markets.



xoxoxoBruce  Thursday May 14 10:15 PM

I guess this blows the alien's plan to hide in the ocean.



Snakeadelic  Friday May 15 09:09 AM

Dangit, now I feel kinda guilty about having opah steaks for dinner last night. I do all the household cooking and my "recipe" is: lightly simmered in a small frying pan with filtered water, tiny bit of olive oil, sea salt, black pepper and just a dusting of garlic, then the remaining "drippings" cooked down into a sauce. The sauce is the hard part--if not watched VERY closely it'll scorch.

One thing that IS good to look for at your local grocers and/or specialty stores: Atlantic lionfish. They're an invasive species in the Atlantic, where the populations from releases in both Florida and Brazil are both headed for the Caribbean. They get to two feet or more, are rapaciously carnivorous, have venomous spines in their dorsal fin to ward off sharks, and have no natural predators in the Atlantic. It's so bad that the National Oceanographic & Atmospheric Administration not only sponsors massive spearfishing tourneys for them, the NOAA wrote a freakin' cookbook just for the species (Pterois volitans is the Latin). I'm 700 miles inland in a small Rocky Mountain town that's not quite as crazed as South Park (love the song at the start of the movie!) but could get there, and though I've mentioned it several times at my local grocery stores that it's considered a gourmet white ocean fish I doubt their distributors are interested. Those of you closer to water, especially the east and Gulf coasts, might want to start asking around because if there's enough interest we have certainly proven that one thing humanity is ENTIRELY capable of is eating an entire species. This is one of the rare occasions when that would be our best plan--eat ALL the Atlantic lionfishes!



footfootfoot  Friday May 15 09:15 AM

Snakeadelic clearly has been following the Friday edible IOTD tradition.

Well done! (Or medium rare?)



Undertoad  Friday May 15 09:19 AM

(I had hoped that would happen, which is why I posted it as a Friday item but 2 hours early)



Griff  Saturday May 16 09:12 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Snakeadelic View Post
Dangit, now I feel kinda guilty about having opah steaks for dinner last night. I do all the household cooking and my "recipe" is: lightly simmered in a small frying pan with filtered water, tiny bit of olive oil, sea salt, black pepper and just a dusting of garlic, then the remaining "drippings" cooked down into a sauce. The sauce is the hard part--if not watched VERY closely it'll scorch.
Well played indeed.


Snakeadelic  Tuesday May 19 08:29 AM

Pro tip: if your chef is not world-renowned with seafood, well done is safest. Doesn't matter if your fish is exothermic or endothermic--and I'm going to have to double check a few things because recent research has turned up that tuna are at least partly endothermic, and great white sharks may be the same. With a Roku and lots of free time, it's still possible to find crazy things to learn on PBS...



BigV  Tuesday May 19 03:27 PM

Well done for fish?

**hurk**



footfootfoot  Friday May 22 03:48 PM

Talk to my friend who battled fish-borne parasites and their after effects for years. That's the only way she'll eat it.

Then, there's sushi.



infinite monkey  Friday May 22 03:57 PM

No, there's not sushi. There never has been and there never will be sushi. Cook the damn stuff. That's why fires were started and kindling was gathered.



Gravdigr  Saturday May 23 04:36 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by BigV View Post
Well done for fish?
Hells yes.


Your reply here?

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