List o’ 10 Creatures From the Ocean Depths II

List o' 10 Creatures From the Ocean Depths II: The worlds oceans cover two thirds of Earths surface. There are many animal species virtually unheard of since the depth were they are located it makes it impossible for people to document them. The deep sea is about 78% of the planets inhabitable volume, fascinating people all over the world about rare or unknown sea creatures. Take a dive beneath the foamy waves and take a look at some of of the creatures from the ocean’s depths.

10. Oarfish

creatures of the deep - giant oarfish

Giant Oarfish caught in the 1970s. With its elongated body and snake-like movements in the water, an oarfish could easily be mistaken for a sea serpent of mythical proportions.

Deep Sea Creatures - oarfish

The Oarfish found to depths of 3000 feet and is the longest bony fish in the ocean, growing up to 50 feet in length. The common name oarfish is presumably in reference to either their highly compressed and elongated bodies or the shape and use of their pelvic fins. The occasional beachings of oarfish after storms, and their habit of lingering at the surface when sick or dying, have given oarfish a place in maritime folklore as the probable source of many sea serpent tales

9. Greenland Sleeper Shark

The biggest known deep-sea fish is the Greenland shark, which grows to over 7m in length and has been photographed at a depth of 2,200m. But this shark is not exclusively a deep-sea species. It also occurs close to the surface, where, because of its eating habits they are attracted to offal thrown overboard from fishing boat. It is also known as the sleeper shark because it’s thought to be rather sluggish, and because they’re often found just lying around on the ocean floor. The Greenland Sleeper eats char, halibut, herring, lumpfish and salmon among other fishes, also marine mammals such as seals, and sea lions. This shark frequently has a relationship with a parasitic copepod, that attaches itself to the cornea of the eye and feeds on the shark’s corneal tissue.

8. Megamouth Shark


This shark is is an extremely rare species of deepwater shark. Since being discovered in 1976, only a few megamouth sharks have been seen. In fact, it is so unlike any other type of shark that it is classified in its own family. The megamouth shark is a filter feeder, and swims with its enormous mouth wide open, filtering water for plankton and jellyfish. Megamouth has luminous organs that give off a glow around its lips. Scientists think this may be to tempt tiny creatures, such as plankton or fish into its mouth. The first megamouth was captured on November 15, 1976 about 25 miles off the coast from Kaneohe, Hawaii when it became entangled in the sea anchor of a United States Navy ship. Examination of the 14-1/2 foot (4.5 m), 1650 lb (750 kg) specimen by Leighton Taylor showed it to be an entirely unknown type of shark, making it one of the more sensational discoveries in 20th century ichthyology.

7. Goblin Shark

The goblin shark is a deep-sea shark and the sole living species in its family. The most distinctive characteristic of the goblin shark is the unorthodox shape of its head. Up to 25% of the goblin shark’s body weight can be its liver. It is currently not understood why the shark has such a large liver. Very little is known about the species’ life history and reproductive habits, as encounters with them have been relatively rare.

6. Giant Sea Spider

Giant Sea Spider

These animals make up for the small size (a giant compared with other spiders) of their bodies by accomodating vital organs such as gonads in their long legs. They feed upon corals and other sessile organisms, sucking up their contents through their enormous proboscis. They can get quite big, growing up to 1 foot in length.

5. Giant Squid

Creature of the Deep: giant-squid

The Giant squid, once believed to be mythical creatures, was filmed for the first time ever in 2006, and finally brought about a decisive end to the debate as to whether or not the species was real. Recent estimates put the maximum size at 13 m (43 ft) for females and 10 m (33 ft) for males. The male of the species has a penis, of over 3 ft (90 cm) in length, which extends from inside the animal’s mantle and apparently is used to inject sperm-containing packets into the female squid’s arms. See the post on mythical creatures also.

4. Vampire Squid

List o' 10 Creatures From the Ocean Depths II: vampire squid

The vampire squid looks like something that swam out of a late-night science fiction movie. But in spite of its monstrous name, it is a small creature, growing to only about six inches in length. The vampire squid has large fins at the to of its body that resemble ears. These fins serve as its primary means of propulsion as it literally flies through the water by flapping these fins. As with other squid, it can also use jet propulsion to move by expelling water through a specialized siphon jet located just under its mantle. The vampire squid has a very gelatinous form, resembling a jellyfish more than the common squid. One interesting feature is that the vampire squid’s body is covered with light-producing organs called photophores. This gives the squid the unique ability to “turn itself on or off” at will through a chemical process known as bio-luminescence.

3. Hairy Angler

The hairy angler is the size of a beach ball and its body is covered in long antennae designed to pick out the movements of any prey foolish enough to venture close to its terrifying teeth. They live in the depths of the ocean, where it’s too deep for sunlight to penetrate so they make their own light. Anglerfish have a fin in the shape of a fishing rod growing from its snout with a glowing light that acts as bait to prey to lure them inside the anglerfish’s huge mouth.

2. Frilled Shark

List o' 10 Creatures From the Ocean Depths II: Frilled Shark

The frilled shark is referred to as a “living fossil” because it is a primitive species that has changed little since prehistoric times. Superficially, the frilled shark resembles a dark brown or grey eel, but the six gill slits identify it as a shark. The sharks are usually found at depths of between 50 m and 1,500 m. They typically eat squid, other sharks, and deepwater bony fish.

1. Telescope Octopus

List o' 10 Creatures From the Ocean Depths II: telescope-octopus

Little is known about the biology and behavior of this strange cephalopod except that it has rotating telescopic eyes, and lives ddep enough in the ocean that it is responsible for making its own light. But its sheathed white appearance makes it look like it might just pop up and say, Boo!

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2 Responses to "List o’ 10 Creatures From the Ocean Depths II":

  1. Malen June 23, 2010 at 01:03

    Whether that’s a picture of a whale shark or not, Smith, you’re wrong about whale sharks not being sharks. I don’t know where you heard that from, but every reputable book on the animal kingdom I’ve read has said that the whale shark, while whalelike (enourmous, filter feeds on plankton), is definately a shark. Otherwise it wouldn’ve been called the Shark Whale.

  2. Smith April 20, 2010 at 22:34

    That is NOT a picture of a Megamouth shark, that’s a whale shark, which is of course a whale, and not a shark at all…