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Creepy Deep-Sea Animals

Researching deep-sea animals is like saying “hello” to aliens. These creatures look delicate and creepy. The bodies of deep-sea fish are often see-through. Some have huge eyes and lots glow in the dark! 

Deep Sea Anglerfish Deep Sea Anglerfish - Illustration: Praha/Shutterstock

What Fish Live the Deepest?

• Brotula Fish

The record holder is currently a fish from the brotula genus. In the Puerto Rico Trench in the Atlantic Ocean, they’ve been found at a depth of 27,460 feet (8,370 meters). There are shrimp-like creatures that also live at breathtaking depths: amphipods live 17,388 feet (5,300 meters) under the surface of the water!


Are There Transparent Animals in the Deep Sea?

• Spook Fish

Spook fish get their name thanks to their almost see-through bodies and really spooky looking heads. They live 1,312-8,202 feet (400-2,500 meters) deep so need to use even the weakest light. Their see-through heads let the light go straight to its eyes. People used to believe that their eyes pointed straight up to spot enemies above them. But researchers at the Monterey Bay Aquarium in California found out that the spook fish can rotate its lenses.

Spook Fish Spook Fish - Illustration: Brauer, A. [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Are There Deep Sea Fish That Glow?

• The Barbeled Dragonfish Uses Light to Advertise Itself

Deep-sea fish could wait for dead fish to fall down from above. But it takes a while and the animals would lose all nutrients by the time they got down here. How do deep-sea fish get food? They need to be able to attract prey more than any other animal. Like by using light organs. Lots of deep-sea fish also have large stomachs. They need them so that they can eat all of their prey quickly as soon as they’ve caught something.

• The Laternfish Uses its Lantern

The lanternfish has little bags under its eyes that are filled with light-emitting bacteria. Being able to disappear when threatened is a handy trick, so the lanternfish simply closes its eyelids like blinds to stop the bacteria’s light from escaping.


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