Did you know that the early reference to wearing costumes at Halloween comes from 16th century Scotland? They are often designed to imitate supernatural, scary beings or the souls of the dead.
On the occasion of Halloween, we’ve run a marine life contest of The Best Halloween Costumes & Features. The following candidates made it into our TOP5. Who wears it best? Is it the Balloon fish with its Galaxy eyes, the Peacock Flounder as Aladdin’s magic carpet, the Cuttle Fish in Drag, the Butterfly Fish’s masquerade, or the Lionfish’s Carnival dress? You decide!
Staring into a balloon fish’s eyes is like looking into a sparkling galaxy. They have the aquatic equivalent of mirrored sunglasses or contact lenses. Green iridescent layers, positioned to reflect bright sunlight from above while still allowing ambient light from the surrounding environment to filter in.
You might ask why we did not make the balloon-shape the highlight of its costume? While the ability to inflate into a balloon-shape is part of the puffer fish’s protective mechanism against evading predators, it can actually threaten the life of this beautiful creature, and we rather get lost in the galaxy of its eyes.
Watch this beautifully decorated fish mimic a Persian carpet rippling in the wind as it swims over the reef!
With iridescent blue spots and frilled fins around its body, this costume really stands out. But you gotta be fast admiring it, as the flounder is pretty shy and can completely change to blend into its background within 2 to 8 seconds.
Famed for their ability to change color and texture within the blink of an eye, thanks to specialized skin cells, Cuttlefish love to dress up in drag. They don’t only do this to win our contest, but to get the ladies.
Did you know that sneaky males mimic the appearance of females and so disguised they creep into the middle of a courting couple, and right under the other male’s nose inseminate the female.
Males have also been seen to display male colors on one side and female on the other, so that to a passing male they just look like a pair of females hanging out and prevent him from interfering.
You will never get a butterfly fish to take off their mask. Many fish and even butterflies themselves have “false eyes” to confuse predators about which way they will flee.
Butterfly fish take this one step further and cover their real eye with a black stripe, a mask to confuse heads from tails.
Heading up the carnival, the lion fish’s elaborate and extravagant costume is that of its highly divided dorsal and pectoral fins. At close range these striking colors are a warning to predators of the poison within its fins. But the striped pattern also serves to break up the outline of the fish when viewed from a distance, creating a camouflage.
Which Halloween feature did you choose to be your favorite? Let us know, or send us a photo of your own marine life-inspired costume to firstname.lastname@example.org with the chance to get featured on our social media channels.
🎃🖤 HAPPY HALLOWEEN! 🔮👻