When you hear a story about a “Japanese diver who has been a friend with the same fish for 25 years,” you will probably think that it is a hoax. However, the following tale is nothing short of an extraordinary and beautiful true story.
Hiroyuki Arakawa is a passionate diver who has been entrusted with overseeing one of the Shinto religion’s shrines called torii, located below the surface of Japan’s Tateyama Bay.
During three decades Hiroyuki got to experience the abundant marine life living around the shrine, and while taking these regular dives, he became the best buddy with a friendly Asian sheepshead wrasse called Yoriko.
The video, which has now gone viral, is showing Hiroyuki kissing the fish during their usual greeting, which undoubtedly confirms the genuine respect and loving relationship between a man and a fish.
According to Dr. Cait Newport, from Oxford University, “Scientists presented the fish with two images of human faces and trained them to choose one by spitting their jets at that picture,” he told CNN.
“The researchers decided to make things a little harder. They took the pictures and made them black and white and evened out the head shapes. You’d think that would throw the fish for a loop. But no, they were able to pick the familiar face even then – and with more accuracy: 86%!”
The study confirms that fish can indeed recognize human faces, which makes the story of a diver and Yoriko’s friendship even more inspiring and legit.