While crossing a stretch of the Caribbean by boat from Playa del Carmen, Mexico to the island of Cozumel, I gazed out over the railing at the passing water. Some insects skimming over the water caught my eye.

As I focused on these flying creatures, I could see them dipping into the water and then coming out again. These were much too large to be insects! They were birds!

They were the funniest birds I’d ever seen, actually, quite funny shaped.

Then some of the birds dived into the water, presumably to catch prey, and never surfaced again.

I stared quizzically at the water and wondered what was happening.

Finally, it dawned on me. These were not insects. These were not birds. These creatures were flying fish.