Barreleye Fish Has See-Through Transparent Heads and Tubular Eyes

There are many unusual fish in the sea, but there’s one so bizarre that you’d have to see to believe it. Meet the barreleye fish or Macropinna microstoma, a deep-dwelling fish that has a transparent head. You read that right: the fish’s head is completely see-through!

Like its name implies, the barreleye fish’s eyes are tubular or shaped like a barrel. They gaze up instead of to the front of its face. The unique placement of the eyes help the fish spot food and avoid predators.

The two dark capsules in front of the barreleye fish’s face, which to us look like its eyes, are actually its olfactory organs. The fish usually sits motionless in the water, using its big fins for stability.

Scientists think that the barreleye fish steals food from another strange marine animal called siphonophore, which has long tentacles. The fish would swim under the siphonophore and steal food from under it.

Images: MBARI

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