Just Look At This Asshole: Dirtbag Fish Changes Colors, Tricks Baby Fish, Eats Them

Meet the dusky dottyback, a harmless-looking lil’ thing that hangs out in coral reefs. They like the warm Indo-Pacific waters, hanging out with their friends at the mall and being complete dickbags to the children of their mortal enemies. The dusty dottyback is an industrious little thing, fond of the sweet flesh of the baby damselfish. So, in a highly-evolved and frankly terrifying maneuver, the dusty dottyback uses their ability to change their color to match their environment to make themselves look like adult damselfish, coddling the babies into a false sense of security, before eating them, like the dirtbags they really are.

To be clear, lots of animals are capable of changing color based on their surroundings. Mot of them do it for protection from predators, but this is one of the first instances of an animal changing its colors for purely predatory reasons. The most chilling finding is that “even if it meant no longer matching its coral surroundings, the dottyback would always change color to match that of its prey.” So, these fish are so dedicated to eating what they want, when they want it, how they want it, that they’ve stopped giving a fuck about whether or not they’re hiding themselves, and are content to just lure unsuspecting innocents into their gaping maws.

Nature! What a bitch. [Motherboard]