More humans have walked on the moon than have been to the deepest parts of planet Earth. Covering 70% of Earth’s surface, the oceans are the largest habitat in the world yet we only know around 1% of the seafloor. Many a mystery surrounds the deep blue and in this list we dredge up some of the least understood. Check out these 25 deep sea mysteries and oddities that will leave you baffled!
Cold Water Corals
Most people think of coral reefs as tropical installations, but we’ve recently discovered there are also cold-water reefs (many of which are being destroyed by trawling vessels). Scientists are in the early stages of study, but they have found a reef off Norway’s coast covering 39 square miles (100 sq kms).
Only two of the eel species Leptocephalus giganteus were ever found, and both were larvae. The first (found off the South African coast) was six feet long and, extrapolated to adult size, could measure over 70 feet (21m) long.
Sometimes called a living fossil due to its primitive features, the frilled shark is a rarely-seen animal which may trap its prey by crimping its body and leaping forward like a snake.
Mariana Trench Mystery Shark
While researching marine life at the bottom of the very deep Suruga Bay, Japanese scientists put bait out to attract marine life. Something they weren’t expecting was a shark at least 30 feet (9m) long showing up to the party. Some say it’s the largest Pacific sleeper shark on record (a third larger than the next closest) but some say it’s proof the massive and prehistoric Megalodon still exists.
The closest comparison being an underwater tornado, whirlpools exist above some deep sea vents. In certain conditions, they can break away and swirl around like flying saucers, bringing heat, chemicals, and organisms across the ocean. It’s like the wind’s uptake of a dandelion’s spores.