Top 5 Spookiest Deep Sea Creatures

This week I have the word “deep” to write about.  Just like last month, I will start off March with a top five.  There are a wide variety of strange creatures that dwell deep below the surface of the ocean.  They are all adapted to finding food in the dark depths of the sea, and generally seem a bit spooky.  Without any more delay, let’s jump right into the top five spookiest creatures of the deep ocean.

5.) Fangtooth Anoplogaster Comuta

Its name says it all!  The fangtooth is definitely a creepy fish worthy of the top five.  Its teeth are long and slender, which it uses to help catch its prey when it wanders closer to the surface of the water during nighttime. They are the only creatures in this top five that do not use bioluminescence to catch prey.  Ironically, they are also some of the deepest dwelling fish in the world.  During the day, it stays in the shadows of a 16,000 foot depth to avoid its predators.  This is important seeing as it is only capable of growing just a bit over a half foot long.

4.) Gulper Eel Eurpharynx Pelecanoides

A gulper eel is classifiable by its pelican-like mouth that allows it to swallow food much larger than its size, which is a whopping 6 feet long.  The gulper eel lives as deep as 6,000 feet, where it attracts fish with bioluminescence.

3.) Viperfish Chauliodus Sloani

The top three fish are all very terrifying, and resemble how people might depict a sea monster.  However, I had to choose, and the viperfish came out on the bottom of the close round between the viperfish, and the second place creature.  Even though the viperfish is only 1 foot long, its ferocious appearance makes it look evil.  It has sharp teeth of varying length, which gives it a savage appearance.  The viperfish lives anywhere from 250 to 5000 feet below sea level, though some make it down to 9,000 feet.  Just like the gulper eel, the viperfish uses light to attract prey.

Viperfish Photo Credit: estherase

Viperfish
Photo Credit: estherase

2.) Deep Sea Anglerfish Melanocetus Johnsoni

In a close race with the viperfish, the anglerfish has more of the spooky aspect.  Many people out there know of the anglerfish from the children’s film, Finding Nemo, and I’m amazed that it has come up somehow in two blog posts within a month of each other.  A female anglerfish grows to be about 5 inches, which also happens to be about the size of a clownfish.  Though, in the movie, the anglerfish appeared much larger than Merlin.  The male anglerfish is black, opposed to the female coloring of brown and has a huge mouth, which earned him the title of “Black Devil,” though he is only half the size of the female.

1.) Deep Sea Dragonfish Grammatostomias Flagellibarba

These fish are truly terrifying.  The bizarre look about them really can throw you off.  Though they only grow 4 to 6 inches long, pictures of them could really make you jump.  They live as far down as 5,000 feet and are well adapted to this environment.  They have a controllable light that they can blink, wave, or do anything to attract smaller fish, which they then devour.  To hide themselves after eating a glowing meal, they have a lightproof stomach, to prevent themselves from attracting predators.

All of these fishes are very eerie, but well adapted to their environment.

Fun fact: The difference between plural fishes and plural fish is that fish refers to the same type of fish.

http://www.seasky.org/deep-sea/fangtooth.html

http://www.seasky.org/deep-sea/gulper-eel.html

http://www.seasky.org/deep-sea/viperfish.html

http://www.seasky.org/deep-sea/anglerfish.html

http://www.seasky.org/deep-sea/dragonfish.html

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