Elusive, Haunting Black Sea Devil Caught on Camera for First Time - Oceana USA
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2014-12-04 00:00:00

Elusive, Haunting Black Sea Devil Caught on Camera for First Time

The dark, cold deep sea is home to a vast amount of creatures that seem like something out of a horror film rather than ocean animals—and their names are often just as terrifying, like the spookfish or the fangtooth fish. While we speculate on just how scary many of the creatures are, many of these animals are poorly understood since they live in environments that are so difficult to access.

In a new video, the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute provides viewers with a rare glimpse into the dark depths of the abyss. With a remotely operated vehicle (ROV), they captured what’s believed to be the first-ever footage of the “black sea devil” anglerfish in its natural habitat. They spotted this elusive creature nearly 2,000 feet below the ocean’s surface in the Monterey Canyon in Monterey Bay, California.

The scientists say this particular deep-sea anglerfish—estimated to be about four inches long—is a female, since female anglerfish are bigger than the males and the males lack the fishing lure that’s captured in this video. Interestingly, this anglerfish has a broken tooth, but the scientists are unsure as to whether it can grow another one.

This anglerfish belongs to the genus Melanocetus, but scientists know very little about these deep-sea anglerfish. The scientists brought this particular anglerfish to the surface and are studying her in a simulated dark and cold laboratory setting, reports National Geographic.

Take a look at the footage below to see the black sea devil in motion: