The Weirdest Sea Creatures on the Ocean Floor

By Todd Neikirk
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The Weirdest Sea Creatures on the Ocean Floor

Todd Neikirk
 
(Photo by Reinhard Dirscherl/ullstein bild via Getty Images)
(Photo by Reinhard Dirscherl/ullstein bild via Getty Images)
 
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There are a staggering amount of animals who live on the world’s surface. But the reality is, that 71% of the Earth is covered by water. And there are many strange and wonderful things that live beneath the sea. Here are some of the most interesting animals who live where most people can’t see them.

Red-Lipped Batfish

The red-lipped batfish appears to be wearing lipstick and uses its fins to walk along the ocean floor
The red-lipped batfish appears to be wearing lipstick and uses its fins to walk along the ocean floor (Image via Rein Ketelaars/Wikimedia Commons)

There are very few creatures quite like the red-lipped batfish. The most striking aspect of the fish, obviously, is the bright red lips that make it appear as if the animal is wearing lipstick.

The red-lipped batfish also has another strange feature as it appears to have legs. The legs, however, are actually fins. Since the fish is a poor swimmer, it uses these fins to trawl along the ocean floor.

Vampire Squid

The name of the vampire squid is inspired by its cape-like arms
Image via Biological Bulletin/Flickr

At first, the idea of a vampire squid seems terrifying. A giant sea creature who also has a taste for blood? No thank you. But the reality is that the vampire squid is a relatively passive animal that mostly feeds on jellies and larva.

The name for the vampire squid is actually inspired by the skin between its arms which makes it look as if it is wearing a cape. Humans aren’t likely to meet up with the vampire squid either. The creature lives down in the pitch-black mesopelagic zone.

Blobfish

Psychrolutes microporos, also called the blobfish, has been called the world's ugliest animal
Psychrolutes microporos, also called the blobfish, has been called the world’s ugliest animal (Image via Australian Museum)

Many people do know about the blobfish, it has frequently been named as the world’s ugliest animal. Technically, the name of the fish is Psychrolutes microporous, but some scientists also refer to it as the fathead.

Since it lives so far down in the water, the fathead wasn’t first seen until 1983. The blobfish, though, only looks horrible when it is pulled all the way up to the surface and the drop in pressure makes it look like a gelatinous mass. The creature looks much different when it is down in its regular environment.

Japanese Spider Crab

The massive Japanese Spider Crab is a delicacy in Japan
The massive Japanese Spider Crab is a delicacy in Japan (Image via Tsarli/Wikimedia Commons)

The Japanese spider crab first catches your eyes because of the sheer span of its legs. The anthropoid could have a leg span of up to 12 feet and could weigh up to 42 pounds.

The spider crab is not a picky eater. It is said that they would rather just feed on what they find on the sea floor rather than hunting its own food.

Due to its large size, the spider crab is considered a delicacy in many parts of Japan. Conservation efforts are being made, however, to ensure the anthropoid is not overfished.

Pink See-Through Fantasia

The Pink-See Through Fantasia is so named because its intestines are visible
The Pink-See Through Fantasia is so named because its intestines are visible (Image via NOAA Okeanos Explorer/Wikimedia Commons/Public Domain)

Few creatures have more nicknames than the Enypniastes. The sea cucumber is called such names as; the headless chicken fish, the headless chicken monster, the Spanish dancer the swimming sea cucumber, and the pink see-through fantasia.

Only discovered in 2007, the sea cucumber has transparent skin which makes it intestines, anus and mouth visible. The creature is native to the western Pacific and can be found well underwater near Borneo.

Box Crab

The box crab excels at hiding beneath the sea floor
The box crab excels at hiding beneath the sea floor (Image via Don de l’auteur/Wikimedia Commons)

The box crab is best known for being a master of disguise. The crustacean is able to nearly bury its full body on the ocean floor with only its eyes protruding above the surface.

The box crab also has an interesting way of mating. The male creature literally sweeps the female crab off her feet. He then drags her along the ocean floor until she molts her shell.

Peacock Mantis Shrimp

The peacock mantis shrimp not only looks stunning, it also packs a punch that has been known to break aquarium glass
The peacock mantis shrimp not only looks stunning, it also packs a punch that has been known to break aquarium glass (Image via Cédric Pénea/Wikimedia Commons)

The peacock is one of the most beautiful creatures that exist on land. And under the ocean floor, one of the most beautiful creatures is named for the land animal. The peacock mantis shrimp displays an almost impossible array of colors.

But the peacock mantis shrimp isn’t just beautiful, it is tough too. The shrimp has two front appendages that it uses to punch. And the punch is so powerful, in fact, that it has been known to break aquarium glass.

 
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