top of page

10 fun facts about mola mola (or oceanic sunfish)

Updated: Nov 7, 2022

Mola mola, also called the oceanic sunfish are a large and odd looking fish. We love them…but they surely are ones of the weirdest looking fish in the oceans!

These pelagic fish are a pretty rare sight for divers, but here in Nusa Penida we are lucky to have a mola-mola season! From June to October, mola-mola can often be spotted while diving in Nusa Penida.

Mola mola diving in Nusa Penida
A face only a mother can love!

Check out these 10 interesting facts about mola-mola below!

1. Mola-mola are the heaviest bony fish in the world, they can weigh up to 5,000 pounds

2. The name "mola" comes from a Spanish word meaning "millstone" or "round stone used as a weight on an abacus or scale."

3. As can be easily seen, mola-molas have no tail or tail fin. However they are surprinsingly fast in the water!

4. There is no known predator of molas, which have been observed eating jellyfish and other small ocean creatures while swimming at depths over 1,600 feet deep

5. Molas are solitary animals that travel alone in their own schools across open water looking for food and mates

6. They have no teeth and feed on jellyfish and other small creatures that float past them

7. Females lay their eggs in pairs inside floating masses of seaweed called "mermaid's purses"

8. They live in all oceans except for Arctic and Antarctic waters

9. Their bodies are covered with small scales which form patterns on their skin

10. The mola-mola is also called "the ocean sunfish" because of its habit of lying at the surface of the water where it absorbs heat from sunlight

There are many unique and interesting facts about this weird-looking sunfish. If you're wondering what kind of animal would eat jellies for breakfast lunch and dinner, then come on down and join us.

The best time of the year to spot mola-molas in Nusa Penida is from June to November, but with some luck you might also see them during the year while diving in Nusa Penida!


bottom of page