The blobfish, with its permanently grumpy expression and pink saggy skin, has topped a poll featuring some of the planet’s strangest looking species.
Thousands voted for the inedible blobfish to become the new mascot for the Ugly Animal Preservation Society (UAPS) in partnership with the National Science + Engineering Competition.
The campaign’s aim is to give ugly animals threatened by extinction a voice and has been backed by celebrities including Stephen Fry and Simon Pegg.
Celebrity scientist professor Brian Cox said: ‘I support the ugly animal campaign, there are too many people trying to save cute animals.
‘They get all the press, and all the attention. Ugly animals are more deserving than cute animals. So I think it is a superb campaign.’
Simon Watt, biologist and president of the society, added: ‘We’ve needed an ugly face for endangered animals for a long time and I’ve been amazed by the public’s reaction.
‘For too long the cute and fluffy animals have taken the limelight but now the blobfish will be a voice for the mingers who always get forgotten.’
UAPS hopes the campaign will encourage more young people to get involved in conservation projects and help highlight the plight of nature’s aesthetically-challenged animals.
The blobfish, which beat off competition from the titicaca scrotum frog and pig-nosed monkey, lives thousands of metres beneath the sea but faces a significant threat from fishing trawler nets.