New Zealand witnessed its hottest summer ever this year, mostly because of a ‘marine heatwave’ which caused water temperatures to rise as much as six degrees in few areas. Due to this record-breaking rise in sea temperatures, a rare tropical fish from Australia called the Queensland groper was spotted in New Zealand waters.
The fish was spotted swimming around the wreck of the HMNZ Canterbury in the Bay of Islands on Sunday, more than 3,000 kilometers away from its usual cruising spots on the coral reefs and estuaries off the Queensland coast.
The water in New Zealand was generally too cold for the fish to breed, and they would usually die by winter. Craig Johnston, owner of Paihia Dive, said it was “very rare” to see them, and the odds of their survival were slim once sea temperatures dipped below 18 degrees.