Man has always wondered what lies beneath the mysterious surfaces of Earth’s oceans and rivers. The thoughts have spun into outlandish stories of scary sea monsters, man eating fish, and more. Here’s a peak at some of the most interesting and horrifying creatures of the deep.
1. Frilled Shark
This eel-like shark has 25 rows of knife like teeth and is able to swallow its prey whole. Even scarier, it can wrap its slender body around its meal like a snake and literally squeeze the life out of it.
This deep sea fish is both ugly and smelly. It contains extremely high levels of the chemical that makes fish smell fishy (but is necessary for marine fish to maintain hydration in their tissues while surrounded by salt water).
3. Black Swallower
There aren’t many predators that can swallow prey up to twice their body length and ten times their mass. This is one of them. The black swallower’s hooked front teeth are designed to let nothing escape and its gut can expand to several times its normal size. And living at depths of up to 9,000 feet, food is so scarce that anything is a potential meal.
4. Goblin Shark
Its no surprise where this shark gets its name. Its long snout is covered in electroreceptor pores that can sense activity and potential meals in pitch black depths of the ocean. It’s hunting grounds range from depths of 1000 to 3000 feet.
5. Giant Squid
Squid aren’t usually scary, but at up to 43 ft long the giant squid is like something out of a horror movie. Each of its eight (arms and tentacles) are lined with hundreds of suction cups. It’s only known predator is the sperm whale, but its rumored the giant squid may eat smaller whales too.
6. Terrible Claw Lobster
This tiny lobster is scientifically known as Dinochelus ausubeli, the first part of which means “terrible claw”, and is pretty scary up close. What makes it so freakish is that it has two different sized claws, and one is covered in teeth.
7. Blob Fish
With a freaky human like face, the blob fish might not show up in your nightmares, you’re sure to remember it! This fish is uglier than it is scary, and lazy too as it doesn’t hunt but feeds on whatever happens to wander by. Its main claim to fame is the 2013 bestowment of World’s Ugliest Animal.
If you didn’t know this was a fish, you’d think it was an alien. It gets its name from the guitar like shape of its body. It lives near the coast and sweeps the ocean floors looking for food. Fishermen net these creatures on occasion and they have recently become an endangered species.
This predator is a deep sea fisherman with its tiny light bulb as bait. It lures in curious fish with the light, and once in range its jaws clamp shut and long needle like teeth make short work of whatever is unlucky enough to get caught. And they can grow up to 100 pounds.
10. Moray Eel
Eels are already creepy enough. But did you know that this eel has Pharyngeal jaws too? This means the Moray Eel has a second set of jaws (and teeth) in its throat, and in this case they actually extend out to help grab prey and pull it in. Its very similar to the Alien movie series.