Although abundant, corals make a challenging meal. Their razor-sharp skeletons are protected by mucus-covered flesh laden with venomous stinging cells. A new study shows how one coral-feeding fish does it. Scientists report in the journal Current Biology that the tubelip wrasse (Labropsis australis) uses highly modified lips to “kiss” flesh and mucus from the surface of corals.
Read the whole story and watch video of the tubelip wrasse feeding at National Geographic’s Weird & Wild news blog: Why Slimy Fish Lips Are the Secret to Eating Stinging Coral.