Sunfish, or Mola Mola, are sometimes encountered by divers in California. They develop their bullet-like shape because they are born with a back fin that never grows, instead, it folds into itself. They’re also unique in that they are the heaviest bony fish in the world – the largest specimens can reach 14ft vertically and 10ft horizontally, weighing nearly 5,000lb. They are found in temperate and tropical oceans around the world and are often mistaken for sharks when their huge dorsal fins emerge above the water. Notably, first ocean sunfish to be held in an aquarium in the United States is claimed to have arrived at the Monterey Bay Aquarium in August 1986.
In a video published by the Mail Online, some incredible footage was shared of divers swimming with a giant, 3,000-pound Sunfish. Here’s a look:
Sunfish live on a diet consisting mainly of jellyfish, but because this diet is nutritionally poor, they consume large amounts to develop and maintain their great bulk. Females of the species can produce more eggs than any other known vertebrate, up to 300,000,000 at a time. Sunfish fry resemble miniature pufferfish, with large pectoral fins, a tail fin, and body spines uncharacteristic of adult sunfish.