What Lives At The BOTTOM Of The Mariana Trench?
From axe-shaped fish to bone-eating zombies,
here are 10 crazy things that live in the deepest place on Earth!!! Welcome to the Mariana
Trench!! 10. Frilled Shark The frilled shark has been around a long,
LONG time. They’re ‘living fossils’, thought to have been swimming around for anywhere
between 95 and 300 million years! Also while they were first discovered in approx 1880
they weren’t actually described until 2004 (the same ROV mission as the barreleye fish).
This is one predator that really knows how to keep its head down. It lives at a depth
of over 5,000 ft (1524 m). Frilled sharks get their name from the frilly
appearance of their gills. They can grow up to 7 ft (2 m) and have a mind-boggling 300
teeth. Their teeth are so white they can attract prey. They feed on squid amongst other creatures
but aren’t picky and will even eat other sharks! It can open its mouth so wide it’s
able to consume an animal up to half its size. They also have a really long gestation period
of 3½ years. When it was first seen the frilled shark was
compared to a sea serpent due to its eel-like body. Reportedly legends of sea serpents came
from sightings of this shark, that would make sense right? While no one has ever seen it
hunting, scientists think that it lunges at its prey like a snake. And while those gills
may look pretty, they actually create a vacuum to suck in a meal. Since it leaves so deep
down and rarely comes up to shallow water, we will probably never see one. 9. Hatchet Fish Okay so if you came face to face with this
dude you’d get one hell of a shock right? Meet the deep sea hatchet fish, so called
because of its metallic, hatchet-shaped appearance. It can be found 5,000 ft (1,524 m) down. The
metal like quality comes from its scales which is just as well because if it weren’t so
shiny you’d have trouble seeing it! The biggest hatchet fish are usually 15 cm
long and the species are bioluminescent which you think would make them an easy target for
predators. Actually this little guy plays a neat trick with their light organs which
face downward, known as ‘counterillumination’. Sounds like magic right? The hatchet fish
can adjust how bright it is according to the quantity of light shining down from above.
By camouflaging itself this way it can hide its shadow and be really difficult to spot.
This is one hatchet you’ll never seeing coming! 8. Seadevil Anglerfish You’ve probably seen this one in the movies.
A seadevil anglerfish appeared in Finding Nemo and the image has been used in some high
profile shows like The Simpsons. They were first described in 1864 and can live at a
depth of over 6,000 feet (1900 m). Like many deep sea species its movements are mysterious
to experts and the only one filmed alive was in 2014. The angler fish’s most distinctive feature
is its ‘esca’. That’s the fleshy tentacle-like thing sticking out of its head. It uses the
glowing esca to attract prey. The angler fish’s dinner swims toward the light, thinking it’s
gonna get a juicy mouthful… when we know that only thing on the menu is them!! The
fish can open its mouth very wide, in fact it’s thought it can make its mouth bigger
than itself so it’s capable of swallowing some big competition. When it comes to the battle of the sexes the
female anglerfish have an advantage over the males. They’re much bigger. A male grows
to around 3 cm but a female can reach 18 cm. However the male gets its own back in a gross
way. Not much is known about the fish’s reproduction cycle but it’s said the male
attaches himself to the female and feeds off her till she’s ready to accept his seed
and start spawning. He starts to slowly disintegrate until he is nothing but teeth and testes.
Maybe TMI, let’s move on… And now for one of the coolest animals! But
first if you are new here welcome! And be sure to subscribe before you leave!! 7. Telescope Octopus Some deep sea animals like to take it easy,
I mean there’s a lot of pressure down there!! Maybe none more so than the telescope octopus.
Living anywhere from 500 – 6,500 ft (150 – 2000 m) below the surface it’s really laid back.
In fact that’s literally what it does… lie back and use its eyes to look up for any
food swimming by.The eyes are the first thing you notice on a telescope octopus. They stick
straight up on stalks in a telescopic way, which is where it gets its name. It can grow
up to 20 cm long, meaning it can really stretch out!Like other octopuses its body is dominated
by its arms. However you can also get a good look at its
digestive gland if you want to! That’s because it too is transparent and jelly-like. The
good news for the octopus is that it’s not too visible in the shadows so it can avoid
predators. Not sure a major organ on permanent display is a good look though. 6. Benthocodon Usually when you think of a jellyfish you
think of a transparent wobbly thing that stings your foot. Well not this one. The benthocodon
isn’t transparent. It has a round, red top which is 2 – 3 cm in diameter and it won’t
sting you unless you run into it 2,500 ft (762 m) below the surface. You’d have to
be pretty crazy to be at that depth and even crazier without any flippers!
To put that into perspective, most recreational scuba divers only dive as deep as 130 feet
(40 meters). Not much is known about this creature since
it lives so deep down, but the reddish dome is great for eating because it helps the jellyfish
hide it’s fluorescent prey and not attract predators while it eats them. To us their prey just look like little particles
that glow in the dark. It’s dangerous so far down because all those lights make you
think that you are going towards prey when it might be a dangerous predator luring you
in like the angler fish! Luckily for the benthocodon it doesn’t have
to worry about that. It moves through the water by whisking its tentacles. It has at
least 1,500 tentacles so it can actually move through the ocean really fast.
As ROV’s go where no man has gone before, more and more new species of critters are
being discovered deep down like this new species of jellyfish and the frilled shark to see
what it does deep down in the trenches. 5. Barreleye Fish This fish with a transparent head shocked
viewers when it appeared on Blue Planet! Also known as a “spookfish” it has a jelly-like
forehead that allows it to look up through its skull, giving it greater visibility! Pretty
freaky huh? It is a very efficient hunter that can live at a depth of at least 2,600
feet (800 m) and can be anywhere from 15 to 40 cm long. The eyes are shaped like barrels
and can be rotated both forward and up and they act like binoculars to spot prey.
Though it was discovered in 1939 the barreleye had only been seen in a deceased state. That
changed in 2004 when a live specimen was snapped. Before that no-one knew about the transparent
dome because it never survived the journey to the surface. It stays motionless a lot of the time and
spends much of its life alone. Its minuscule mouth means it has to be selective over what
it can chew. The barrelfish enjoys things like zooplankton and the Monterey Bay Aquarium
Research Institute were able to record the live specimen live, swimming around in 2004
in the Mariana Trench. 4. Goblin Shark This shark is one ugly shark, hence why we
call it the goblin shark! Of course I wouldn’t say that to its face poor thing! But its sword-like
snout and prehistoric appearance makes it truly unique.
It’s another living fossil, and hasn’t changed for millions of years. It grows up
to 13 ft (4 m) in length and reaches a weight of around 200 kg so it’s not one to be messed
with, not like it will mess around with us or anything.
It’s a slow-moving predator that prefers to hang out on the ocean floor waiting for
things to swim overhead. Its diet includes squids and crabs and it’s been known to
munch on plastic which is a sad remark on the condition of the planet. The freaky thing
about this shark apart from its big nose is the way it eats its prey. It has as many as 115 teeth in its head which
are longer in the middle. When it goes to take a bite its joints enable the jaws to
slide forward, like its teeth are coming out of its face almost. It’s bad enough being
eaten by a shark in the first place without it looking like Pennywise the Clown from ‘It’!
Creepy, huh? 3. Zombie Worm Zombie worms, also known as bone-eating worms,
were discovered by accident in 2002 when they appeared to be drilling into the skeletons
of dead animals like whales and fish. This confused experts because they looked too squishy
to be able to drill like that, but that is how they got their name. The answer came later
on in 2012. What the worms were doing was attaching themselves to the bone and using
acid to dissolve the bones and extract the lipid goodness within. Yummy! Want to hear something else weird? There are
male and female zombie worms but they’ve got a bit of a bizarre relationship. You see
at first scientists believed they were all female because that’s all they could see.
The males were actually inside the females, remaining in a larval state. Gives a whole
new meaning to the expression ‘man trouble’! 2. Foraminifera Foraminifera or ‘fora’ are tiny organisms
from the ‘protist’ family. They vary between 100 micrometers and around 20 cm. Because
many of them are so small and I’m guessing chewy, they are a prime source of food in
the Mariana Trench. That’s a shame because there’s a lot more to these little things
than meets the eye. Not that there’s much to see in the first place what with them being
tiny and all. Fora use fine hairs called ‘reticulopodia’ to catch their food, be it plankton or even
small animals. These creatures are small but they’re experienced at life. They’re thought
to date back to the Carboniferous and Permian eras so they’re living fossils going back
around 300 million years! Those who feast on them also have to crunch
through their shells. These are made from stuff like sand and organic particles. The
shells can be hollow tubes or spheres, or they can contain little chambers. Fora are
related to algae and it’s been known for algae to actually grow inside these chambers.
Kind of the ultimate deepsea apartment share! 1. Ping Pong Tree Sponge The strangest name on our list is also the
nastiest! Sure, Ping Pong Tree Sponge sounds like something out of Spongebob Squarepants
and it’s one beautiful-looking life form. But despite this charming exterior this isn’t
a thing to be messed with! It lives nearly 9000 ft (2743 m) underwater and if you’re
a small creature it spells bad news. This is a carnivorous sponge. You heard right!
It’s a sponge that kills! The 50cm-tall stalk has a series of stems on top of it which
hang in the water. And if you’re a crustacean and you swim too close you soon know about
it. Each stem ends in a network of tiny hooks called ‘spicules’ which you can easily
get caught in. What then happens is a slow and terrible death.
Cells travel up to literally dissolve your body. Because the Ping Pong Tree Sponge doesn’t
have internal digestion it has to do it on the outside where everyone can see it. Imagine
not only being eaten but also being on display for the whole ocean to gawp at. Plus you’re
alive as it happens. For such a pretty thing it has some pretty disgusting behavior… Thanks for watching! Were you surprised by
any of these? Let us know in the comments below!! Be sure to subscribe and see you soon!