Creepy Fish With “Human-Like Face” Spotted In China

A fish with a 'human-like face' was seen in southwest China. Newsflare/Chinalive

A black-and-gold “human-like face” was spotted in China earlier this week as it slowly crept from the shadows. This face – complete with markings that resemble eyes, nose, and a mouth – was observed on a fish, of all things.

A video captured on November 5, 2019, showed a carp with face-like markings in southwestern China, according to news aggregate service Newsflare. Cyprinus carpio can come in a variety of colors, from dark olive to silver in the wild. In captivity, carp are bred for their ornamental colorings that can come in a variety of patterns, including golden-yellow and black that outlines a human face, according to the New South Wales Department of Primary Industries.

But why do we see a human face on a being that is so far removed from our species? It’s a concept known as anthropomorphism, whereby humans attribute human characteristics or behavior to animals or inanimate objects. It comes in part from our innate connection to the natural world. Studies show that babies are more interested in animals than any other object in their environment and among the first words a child will say are animal names and their sounds. 

 

There are a number of theories surrounding why humans anthropomorphize nonhuman beings and objects, a majority of which conclude that it is an arbitrary behavior that extends from our social structure, allowing us to read cues, body language, and behavior to aid us in survival.

A systematic review of studies surrounding anthropomorphism found that our ability to anthropomorphize nonhuman beings are “supported by a set of cognitive mechanisms” that are both an automatic response to any human-like behavior and reflective, such as believing your cat may be hungry when it sits in front of the fridge.

Then again, sometimes pranksters are just really good at faking it. A video showing a fish with a human face posted earlier this year racked up a whopping 9.1 million views from believers and skeptics alike. An investigation by Snopes found that – surprise, surprise – the video was a total phony

  

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