Posted in biology, electronic imaging and displays

Mystery science picture

The latest one from Discover Magazine:

Dr Havi Sarfaty, Veterinary Association, Photo Courtesy of Nikon Small World

What is it? Abstract Expressionism? Hint: These plates cover a creature that’s flat and round—hence its name.

Answer: A Discus Fish
The aptly named discus fish has a compressed, circular body and is native to tributaries of the Amazon River in South America. Despite their shy demeanor and extreme sensitivity to water quality, discus fish are a popular choice for aquariums because of their mesmerizing, brightly colored markings. Discus fish feed their young through a strange form of nursing; the larvae nibble at a protein-packed mucus secretion on their parents’ skin. This 20x-magnification image of the fish’s scales captured sixth place in Nikon’s 2009 Small World competition.



Beth Kelley is an applied & digital anthropologist with an overall interest in how people engage with and are impacted by their environments and vice versa. This has manifested itself in many ways, by looking at creativity, playful spaces, built environments, and environmental enrichment, sustainability, design research, and integrative and collaborative models of learning such as through play and hands-on learning.