PowerPoint Slideshow about 'Puffer Fish' - griffin-parrish
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Most puffers are found in tropical and subtropical ocean waters, but some species live in foul and even fresh water. They have long fat bodies, that can grow up to three feet, with round heads. Some have wild markings and colours to show off their toxicity, while others have more neutral colouring to blend in with their environment.
Puffer fish are able to inflate into a ball shape to protect themselves against predators. Also known as blowfish, these clumsy swimmers fill their elastic stomachs with huge amounts of water or air, which can enable them to blow up seven times their normal size.
Puffer fish are scaleless fish and usually have rough or spiky skin. All puffer fish have four teeth that are fused together into a beak form. They are in the family Tetraodontidae, which means four teeth. Puffer fish eat mostly invertebrates and algae. Large puffers will even crack open and eat clams, mussels, and shellfish with their hard beaks.
Even if a predator gobbles up a puffer before it inflates, it won't enjoy it . Most puffer fish contain a toxic substance that makes it not very tasty and potentially deadly to other fish and even humans.
There are more than 120 species of pufferfish worldwide.
Tetrodotoxin also known as TTX, is the poison carried by pufferfish. It is a very dangours neurotoxin that shuts down electrical signaling in the nervous system. TTX does not cross the blood brain barrier, which leaves the victim fully conscious with paralyzed muscles. Very scary! Athough cooking does not remove the toxin, Puffer fish from restaurants are safe to eal and poisoning is very rare. Most deaths from fugu occur when untrained people catch and prepare the fish, accidentally poisoning themselves. In some cases, they even eat the highly poisonous liver as a delicacy.
The puffer fish’s diet contains certain bacteria and these produce the deadly TTX in its body.
The signs and symptoms of TTX poisoning range from a slight tingling and numbness on the lips to becoming completely paralysed and to death from respiratory failure and the nervous system shutting down. Typically, these symptoms develop within 5 - 30 min after eating. In moderate and severe cases, this progresses within 4 - 6 hours and death can take place within 2 – 12 hours.
As recent as a few years ago, without modern technology, doctors found it extremely hard to find a pulse and would wait untill the body started to rot until declaring the person dead.
There is enough poison in one pufferfish to kill 30 adults, and there is no known antidote.
In Japan, puffer fish are called Fugu, Tessa and Sashi. It is a very expensive delicacy. Because the fish is so poisonous, they are prepared only by trained, licensed Fugu chefs. One false cut by the chef could mean a potential death for the consumer.
Fugu is prepared in many different steps, first the chef removes the skin, then any insides, the liver and the sexual organs, which have the most poison and the bones. Then the blood is washed off and the fish is filleted ready for consumption.
There are many cases were people have been poison by Fugu in some cases the victim comes out ok but in other cases its not so good. Luckily for John Zemore, after eating the deadly puffer fish and consuming the poison, he didn’t not become a bad situation.