Creature Feature: Diving Deep

Halloween is right around the corner! To celebrate, we’re introducing you to some of the coolest, creepiest deep-sea animals.

Published October 27, 2016

Vampire Squid

Vampyroteuthis infernalis, the vampire squid’s scientific name, translates to "vampire squid from hell." A name like that evokes visions of frightening, demonic creatures. In reality, however, the vampire squid is a fairly docile cephalopod.


Unlike other squid, this species does not ink. Instead, it emits a cloud of bioluminescent mucus, confusing predators as it makes its escape in the dark, deep sea!

Frilled Shark 

Inside its triangular head, the frilled shark’s mouth is lined with 25 rows of small, shark teeth. This species’ unusual body shape resembles an eel. 
Very little is known about the frilled shark’s predatory strategies, but some scientists believe that, much like a snake, the animal uses its streamlined shape and sharp teeth to attack prey. 


American goosefish, also known as monkfish or anglers, were first discovered in the early 19th century. Known for their unusual shape, goosefish have the ability to almost completely flatten their bodies!goosefish

Goosefish are found in much of the deep ocean, including an area off the Mid-Atlantic coast known as the Baltimore Canyon. Last week, we announced a new initiative to help protect this area and allow experts the opportunity to study the animals that live there. Show your support for Baltimore Canyon here! 

Sarcastic Fringehead

A rather inconspicuous-looking fish, the sarcastic fringehead is known for being a seriously aggressive predator. Occupying the deeper waters off the coast of California, these bennies will make a home out of almost any tube-like structure, including snail shells or the occasional glass soda bottle.

Male sarcastic fringeheads attract mates and assert their dominance by displaying their large, brightly-colored mouths. 

Want to do your part to help protect the deep sea? Visit our Baltimore Canyon site.

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