thought i would bore you with this wright up
Although the bristlenose may seem strange and exotic fish to some peoples eyes. It is actually ideally suited to its enviroment with a strange and wonderful set of adaptations that make the Ancistrus not only a successful group of fish but resillient too.
Mother nature is not often the kind and benevolent entity we would like to think,
especially for the little individuals who depend on her largess. Romantic concepts have little place in the lives ofthe bristlenose whose every day is unremitting effort to find enough to eat, and to avoid being eaten, also to reproduce. In the pursuit of these three aims acute senses are essential for success. Fortunatelty the bristlenose is well supplied with these.
The eyes of the bristlenoses, and the loricariidae family generally are equipped with a papillary iris flap. Just as in humans, this can expand to cut out light when they are exposed to bright lights or contract to allow the maximum available light to reach the the eye. the flap can clearly been seen in aquarium fishes as a small gold horseshoe at the top of the eye.
The eyes of the bristlenose are of limited importance. Often they live in rivers with low visibility, on a rocky or woody substrate where the line of sight may be severly limited. Furthermore, the eyes are firmly situated on top of the head, looking up into the water, while the fish must find food on the substrate the bristlenose cleverly manoeuvres his/her mouth over the substrate and allows the bristlenose to successfully find its food.
Loricariids have, like may other catfish a reduced swim bladder. This organ serves to regulate the bouyancy of the fish that have more traditional lifestyles, making sure they dont float to the surface or sink like stones,
however Loricariids actually want to sink as they spend there entire lives on the substrate, or possibley clinging to rocks or wood with there powerful sucker mouths, they have very little interest in swimming and don't need to regulate there postion in the water, In spite of this, the swim bladder is not only present but strongly protected by fused and flattened vertebrae which are not only fused together but also to the skull. Underneath this shelter the swim bladder consists of two atrophied lobes, one either side of the body, connected by a narrow channel,
The swim bladder may also be used in the reproduction of sound, distressed bristlenose can emit a high- pitched squeak, although i have never heard this myself,
the sound is produced by the bristlenose rotating its pectoral spines in the sockets, the noise is then amplified by the swim bladder.