Because of its diverse landscapes, Pakistan is home to many unusual animals. Here are just a few of the amazing creatures the country has to offer:
Indian Glassy fish are found in the wild throughout South Asia. They are now very commonly sold as aquarium fish because of their see-through bodies. Unfortunately they are often dyed with harmful chemicals that drastically shortens their lifespans. Glassy fish live in freshwater, and feed on small crustaceans and worms. They enjoy the company of other fish and spawn their eggs on the leaves of underwater plants.
The Indus River Dolphin is an endangered animal, with only around 1,100 remaining in the wild. They are one of only four freshwater dolphin species that live in rivers their entire lives. On average their length is eight feet long, and they can weigh up to 250 pounds. Just like dolphins in the sea, Indus River Dolphins use echolocation, however they are mostly blind due to living in muddy rivers.
Unfortunately due to their shy nature and the fact that they are endangered, there are few photos of the Indus River Dolphin. This photo is of a close relative and fellow river dolphin, though this breed is typically found in the Amazon.
Gourami live throughout Pakistan and India, and are one of the few fish that breathe air from the surface of the water, rather than through gills. There are actually 90 different types of gourami. “True Gourami” fish live up to twenty-five years, and the adults grow to six inches in length. Malesmake nests out of bubbles for the female lay eggs in, which can reach up to 600 in number.
The finless porpoise is native to the Indian Ocean, and parts of the Pacific. Their name comes from the fact that they do not have a dorsal fin on their backs, like other porpoises and dolphins do. Around half of the population has pink eyes, instead of dark ones. Preferring shallower waters, they live in coastal areas, and even some major rivers. Finless porpoises eat small fish and shrimp, but have been known to eat octopuses on occasion as well.
These small colorful fish are another common resident of aquariums around the world. They grow to reach a length of about six and a half inches, and live seven years on average. They live throughout the Indian Ocean, residing in shallow water coral reefs. These fish do not live in schools larger than twenty, and instead prefer to spend most of their time in pairs. They’re a favorite among divers since they are not intimidated when divers swim close to them.
The Knifetooth Sawfish is also an endangered species, and lives throughout the Indian Ocean. These are named for their distinctive snout, which contains up to 29 pairs of dagger-like ‘teeth’ on the sides of their saw shaped nose. Their actual teeth are actually mostly blunt. Not much is known about their diet, but there are theories that they use their saw nose to stun prey or to dig for food. They have fins, which are similar in appearance to shark’s, and reach up to fifteen and a half feet in length as adults. Knifetooth Sawfish live in shallower waters.
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