Zoology & Botany

clown fish

Prepare a picture of/book about/a toy clown fish in advance, as well as a sample of orange scales

Say: Look at this animal. (Show a picture of a clown fish.) This is a fish.

Remember, to be classified as fish, an animal should

live in water, have a backbone (vertebrate), scales, fins, breathe using gills. All fish are cold-blooded and don´t have ears.

(Point to the clown fish) Say: Clownfish come from the Pomacentridae family and is widely known as a popular aquarium fish. Clownfish are colored with a vivid orange hue and 3 vertical white stripes (Point to the white stripes). Their fins are rounded more than pointed and have a fringe of black. They also feature a single nostril on either side of their snouts. Their name most likely comes from their bright uniform and comical behavior; clownfish perform an elaborate dance (Take the baby´s hand and dance with him) with an anemone before taking up residence, gently touching its tentacles with different parts of their bodies until they are acclimated to their host. They are usually quite active fish, which is often mistaken for "clowning around". In fact, they are actually very aggressive fish and are usually defending their territory in the anemone.

Go back to the picture of the clown fish. Say: let’s find clown fish’s body parts. This is its head, eyes, nostrils (through which it breathes), mouth, body, fins: 1,2; this is its tail. Clownfish and sea anemones have a mutually beneficial aquatic relationship. Clownfish make their primary residency in the stinging tentacles of sea anemones. It is a location affording clownfish protection from predators. In return, the clownfish eat parasites drawn to sea anemones. The constant movement of the clown fish around the sea anemone adds more turbulence to the surrounding water giving the sea anemone greater access to oxygen.

Clown fish are living things and need energy to survive. Clown fish are omnivorous animals meaning that they eat both plants and animals. Clown fish eat a wide range of food such as algae, plankton, mollusks and small crustaceans. Ask: Do you know, baby that all clown fish are born male and develop female reproductive organs when needed? Female clown fish lay their eggs on a flat surface close to the sea anemone which they inhabit. They can lay hundreds or thousands of eggs at one time. Clown fish lay their eggs around the same time as a full moon and the male clown fish guards the eggs until they hatch just over a week later.

Clown fish are endemic to the Pacific and Indian oceans embracing Red Sea and inhabits the Great Barrier Reef, on the Australian east coast. We need to take care of Clown Fish and treat them with respect because they are living things just like us, people.

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