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A Fishing Fish

By Christy Lowman

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I love everything about fishing. The time spent outside while waiting for a bite, the electric feel of the tug on your line, to the fight to bring it to shore. Then finally, the surprise of what fish you caught and its size. Let’s face it, what is there not to love?

God has thought of everything! He even created a fish that fishes! It is even equipped with its own attached fishing pole. I am certain that this fish loves the thrill of fishing as much as I do because fishing is the only way it can survive. He will wait patiently, unmoving, in the pitch-black darkness, for days, maybe weeks, or months for a bite. Are you this patient when you fish? After a few hours, if I haven’t caught anything, I am ready to go home.

Despite this fish’s appearance, it is one of my favorite fish because it is so unique. It is called an Anglerfish.

Other names it is known by are Football fish, man-gobbler, snaggletooth sea devil, wolf trap, pugnacious dreamer, and tyrannical toad.

There are 170 known species in 12 families of anglerfish. They are still finding new species of anglerfish today.

An anglerfish, depending on which type, can be a different shape. Some are round and squatty. Some have huge snouts and are flat-bodied. Others have clear filaments.

There are types of anglers that have glowing spots on their backs while others have lures on the roof of their mouth instead of on the end of their fishing pole.

The anglerfish I see the most in pictures has a gigantic mouth that opens up to about the size of a bucket. It has very sharp teeth that are long and needle-like. Unlike other fish and animals whose teeth are hooked to their jawbone, the anglerfish’s teeth can fold in under pressure.

Their eyes are frosted over, almost milky and they have bony fins. Their fishing pole is the spine part of the dorsal fin on top of their head. The lure at the end is made out of flesh and has a pore where a specific bacteria lives. Not much is known of this bacteria other than it is what makes the lure glow. Different anglers have different bacteria.

The anglerfish and the bacteria have a relationship where they each help the other survive. The Anglerfish gives the bacteria a home inside the lure, without it they would not live, while the bacteria make the fishing lure glow so the anglerfish can catch its food to survive. This relationship is called a symbiotic relationship. A symbiotic relationship is where two or more different species of animals assist one another to survive.

The angler’s fishing lure is called an esca. It can be seen glowing in the dark deep-sea water for at least a ½ mile away. When the lure lures a fish close enough the angler will swallow it whole.  The angler’s mouth can swallow a large fish despite the angler’s size. Its stomach can open up to twice its size to accommodate these large fish. Once the fish is swallowed the moveable teeth will move to where the sharp ends are pointy towards the inside mouth opening making it next to impossible for the swallowed fish to escape.

Anglerfish don’t really swim they just float and wait for their prey. They are not born with their fishing lure or with their glowing bacteria friend. They are born as small see-through larvae. They float to the ocean surface to feed and grow. Once an adult, they will sink down deep into the waters to live.

Did you know God loves to fish? I’m sure He loves to fish for fish, but He is a super great fisherman of men. Meaning He is trying to catch the attention of people to help them become believers. I used to think of us as fishers of men but really, we are just the ones who throw out the bait. We tell them about Jesus and God reels them in. Is that not cool or what? We also have to be patient. We might have to throw our fishing lines out several times or wait for hours, weeks, months, and possibly even years before a nonbeliever takes the bait. Then once we tell them about Jesus it is up to God to bring them closer to Him, ultimately developing a relationship with them along with becoming their Savior.

So, my advice is to learn to love to fish and become the best fisherman/bait thrower you can be because God needs you to cast the bait and help Him bring in more people to join the Kingdom of God. Who knows, maybe in the process you will enjoy catching fish as well.

Dear Lord, help us become the best bait throwers we can be, so You can be a successful fisherman of men. Help up not draw dreary or impatient but give us the fever and the love to want to fish for nonbelievers no matter how long it takes. Dear Lord, we thank You for saving us, please help us save others. We also thank You for all Your creations. You make no mistakes! We thank You for the love of fishing that You have instilled in each one of us and even the anglerfish. In Jesus’s name, Amen.

And so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. And Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men.” Luke 5:10 ESV


Christy Lowman is a Christian author and illustrator that lives in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains with her husband and two children. She enjoys writing and illustrating books for all ages. Some of her short stories are published with Guideposts and HCI. Christy gives all the glory to God in everything she does. A portion of every book sold from the Small Bible Character Series will be donated to battle human trafficking. If you enjoy her books, “like’ her author page on Facebook and let her know! You can buy her books at // You can reach her at //


You can read more Christian news from Christy here.