Lumpsuckers or lumpfish are coldwater fish that live in the Arctic, North Atlantic, and North Pacific oceans. There are over two dozen species of them, but a few of the smaller kinds appear to have Ponyo-like faces, especially the one above. From CalAcademy:

With their befuddled-looking expressions, globiform bodies, and comically poor swimming skills, Pacific spiny lumpsuckers (Eumicrotremus orbis) are almost impossible to observe with a straight face. These entertaining little creatures, however, also possess some pretty striking adaptations. Their standout trait is a true evolutionary wonder: What was once a set of pelvic fins has fused to form a large, surprisingly strong sucker disk, giving the orb-shaped fish the ability to anchor itself to rocks, kelp, and eel grass.

…and balloons. Here are some adorable lumpsuckers on a balloon at Epson Shinagawa Aqua Stadium:


Baby Lethotremus awae or Dango-uo lumpsuckers seem to move their tails around like feisty cats in this video from Japan’s Enoshima Aquarium:


Here’s a red one that yawns:


And this one appears to be hanging out with a friend:


Read more about them at Wikipedia and Scientific American. Watch more strange and amazing fish at Enoshima Aquarium, as well as anglerfish, goliath groupers, and fish that walk.

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