Stunning Portraits of Siamese Fighting Fish
Photographer Visarute Angkatavanich gets incredibly close up to capture these stunning portraits of Siamese fighting fish in graceful, dancerly poses. The Thai photographer uses perfectly placed lighting to create the dramatic highlights and shadows that give personality to each little finned creature.
The photographs convey a sense of elegance that sits in direct contrast to the territorial nature of the popular freshwater aquarium fish. As they twist and turn and form captivating curves, Angkatavanich times his shots perfectly to capture the magnificence of the individual forms. His subjects are set against either a stark black or white background and the beauty of the flowing fins is playfully complemented by each naturally fierce facial expression.
The Siamese fighting fish (Betta splendens) also known as betta, is a popular species of freshwater aquarium fish. The wild ancestors of this fish are native to the rice paddies of Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam and are called pla-kad (literally biting fish) in Thai. They tend to be rather aggressive.
The people of Siam and Malaya (now Thailand and Malaysia) are known to have collected these fish prior to the 19th century.
In the wild, bettas spar for only a few minutes or so before one fish backs off. Bred specifically for fighting, domesticated betta matches can go on for much longer, with winners determined by a willingness to continue fighting. Once one fish retreats, the match is over. Seeing the popularity of these fights, the king of Siam started licensing and collecting these fighting fish.
Although known for their brilliant colors and large, flowing fins, the natural coloration of B. splendens is a dull green, browns and gray, and the fins of wild specimens are relatively short. Brilliantly colored and longer-finned varieties have been developed through selective breeding.
Help Us Save the World’s most Endangered Dolphin
Maui’s dolphin is the world’s smallest and rarest subspecies of dolphin; it is estimated only 55 are left. A subspecies of Hector’s dolphin, and only found on a small stretch of New Zealand’s South Island, their survival is threatened. Living only a few miles off the coast, they are exposed to sand mining, fishing trawl nets, and a wide variety of pollutants and contaminants.
Their females don’t begin breeding until they’re seven to nine years old and only give birth to one calf every two to four years. Potential population growth is slow and makes their immediate recovery critical.
Stand with organizations like the World Wildlife Fund and urge New Zealand’s Prime Minister, John Key, to protect these precious creatures from extinction!
Photo Credit: Earthrace Conservation
HONESTLY THOUGHT THESE HAD ALREADY DIED OUT. I doubt these will actually come back- they are too far gone. But sign it everyone plz.
I love dolphins :’c
Narwhals travelling along their narwhallian highways to get to Nar-whal-nia
We’re diggin’ this stunning set of marine photos captured by Mark Laita. There’s also a hardcover book filled with 200 pages of Mark’s underwater work. Check it out on Amazon here!
via My Modern Met