There are so many aquatic creatures to discover on a Whitsunday Islands trip, including thousands of fish species, turtles, whales and more. If you pull on your snorkel, you have your best chance of getting up close and personal with some of these incredible animals. But what are the weirdest species in the Great Barrier Reef?
One weird creature that hides in the Great Barrier Reef is the cuttlefish. And it hides very well! The cuttlefish is active during the day in the Great Barrier Reef, but is able to easily hide by changing colour to camouflage. It also uses this camouflage ability to mesmerise prey such as crustaceans and other fish, before catching them with its tentacles and devouring them.
During your Whitsunday Islands trip, stop by the waters near Heron Island and you might spot this bizarre creature. While these might be called worms, they have nonretractible tenticles at the end of their bodies, earning them not only the name “spaghetti” worm, but also their scientific name Loimia Medusa, after the Greek monster with a head of snakes.
At first glance, parrotfish look fairly normal. They are found in relatively shallow waters and can often be seen in the Great Barrier Reef. They stand out nicely with their bright colours. So what makes these fish so weird? At night they excrete a mucus which spreads around their body creating a cocoon-like layer before going to sleep. This helps protect them from predators by hiding their scent.
Another weird site you might discover on your Whitsunday Islands trip is a giant clam. Their name is certainly no understatement as these clams can grow to over a metre in length, and live for over 100 years. Despite being historically misunderstood as “killer” or “man-eating” clams, giant clams mostly live on algae!
Sometimes just known as stonefish, reef stonefish are carnivores that live on the bottom of the ocean disguised as a rock. Their camouflage abilities are unparalleled. They can grow to 30 to 40 centimetres and are one of the most venomous fish in the world, but they mostly eat small fish and crustaceans.
Book a Whitsunday Island trip today and dive below the water to discover the weirdest species in the Great Barrier Reef.