HowTo:Travel with a hagfish

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The right and wrong ways of traveling with a hagfish.

What is a hagfish? A hagfish is an eel-shaped, cylindrical species of fish. That's all you need to know. How to travel with a hagfish? Well, first you would to ask yourself whether you would want to travel with a live or dead hagfish. There are between 30 and 35 species of hagfish worldwide, so you have lots to choose from. For beginners, it is recommended that you travel with the species known as Myxine kuo, which reach no more than 18 cm. It should be dead. Experienced travellers have been known to travel with live species such as Eptatretus goliath, which is the largest known hagfish, growing to almost 127 cm.

Umberto Eco has provided steps on how to travel with a salmon. Travelling with hagfish is much more complex, as hagfish produce a large amount of mucus over their bodies, thus making it a challenge –but a worthwhile and profitable one. Hagfish secrete a lot of slime. You should never forget that. Travelling with a hagfish can be a slippery road.

Reasons for traveling with a hagfish[edit | edit source]

  • Protection
  • Sustenance
  • Companionship

Packing your hagfish[edit | edit source]

Give your hagfish plenty of room in your suitcase or duffel bag –even if it's dead. Do not place it near your tube of toothpaste; it's easy to get confused, especially on a transatlantic flight, when everything's dark and everyone's shut their windows, and you're expected to sleep, even though what you really want to do is join the Mile-High Club.

Personality[edit | edit source]

Hagfish are not as aggressive as their cousins the lamprey. Hagfish scavenge for dead and dying fish, so travelling with one is similar to the experience of travelling with a relative, if not more pleasant.

Security issues[edit | edit source]

About 20% of X-ray technicians at your local airport will notice immediately whether you have stored a hagfish in your suitcase. Don’t panic; airport personnel are prepared for this. Answer their questions clearly and orotundly. When they ask whether you packed your hagfish yourself, please always respond in the affirmative. Do not worry if this is true! Security personnel are looking for terrorists, not hagfish transporters. They know the difference most of the time. Hagfish are non-native to the Red Sea, the Arctic, and the Southern Pacific, so you may encounter prohibitions in regards to travel to these areas.