It’s called the hoodwinker sunfish, which was first discovered and named by Marianne Nyegaard, a marine scientist at the Auckland War Memorial Museum in New Zealand, in 2017. However, except one time, in the 1890s, whet this fish appeared in the Netherlands. All cases of the big fish were found in Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Chile.
“This is why it’s so intriguing why it has turned up in California,” Marianne Nyegaard said. “This is certainly the most remarkable organism I have seen wash up on the beach in my four years at the reserve,” an intern at Coal Oil Point Reserve, Jessica Nielsen, appreciated. “It’s the strangest fish I’ve ever seen,” Thomas Turner, an evolutionary biologist at the University of California, Santa Barbara, said. The creature is huge, he added, but “they’re basically shaped like a disc. So they’re flat, and they’ve lost their tail, completely, and they just have sharp fins that stick up off the top and the bottom that they use to flap kind of like a bird’s wings.” Their faces have a “permanently surprised expression,” It’s scale structure and the number of boney structures are also different from other species.