Fascinating Underwater Discoveries


Photo on UnsplashPhoto byFrancesco UngaroonUnsplash

Scientists with the help of deep-sea divers have discovered some shocking and mind-blowing creatures and objects at the bottom of the oceans around the world.

Chuuk Lagoon

Truk Lagoon, also known as Chuuk Lagoon, is a wreck diver’s dream come true, surrounded by warm tropical water. From its peaceful blue waters to the ghost fleet resting beneath the surface, technical and recreational divers find plenty of reason to flock to this island paradise.The Japanese gained control of Chuuk Lagoon following World War I and were attracted by this natural harbor. More than 70 years have passed since World War II ended, but aircraft and warship remains are still being discovered in various parts of the world. Recently, the group Project Recover announced the discovery and identification of wreckage belonging to three U.S. aircraft lost during the 1944 Operation Hailstone, which took place on Chuuk Lagoon.During World War II, Chuuk Lagoon was the Empire of Japan’s main base in the South Pacific. In 1944, the lagoon’s capacity as a naval base was destroyed by several naval attacks. In two days of air operations, U.S. aircraft destroyed or damaged hundreds of Japanese planes, warships, and cargo vessels caught in the lagoon. Dozens of American aircraft were also lost, some still undetected.According to the lead historian, Colin Coulbourne, Truck Lagoon may hold as many as 33 aircraft that carried up to 100 MIAs. In the light of the recent expeditions, the remaining parts of the air crafts and military artefacts have been found in the course of two years. Moreover, new discoveries have revealed that the scary expeditions led to the recovery of propellers, dive brakes, dive bombers, a tail section and an entry hatch surrounded by human skulls.

Sea Floor Holes

There’s a mystery lurking in the Pacific Ocean just off the coast of Big Sur, California. An underwater survey has found thousands of small, round divots scooped out of the soft sediment on the seafloor. While it’s not clear how the holes formed, they seem to have quickly become popular among seafloor critters as desirable shelters.Researchers at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute found roughly 15,000 of these holes, averaging 11 meters in diameter and one meter in depth.The researchers found two different sizes of holes. The larger ones, known as pockmarks, average 175 meters across and five meters deep, and are nearly circular and fairly evenly spaced. The smaller ones are called micro depressions.Over the last few years, additional surveys by MBARI and other organizations revealed over 5,200 pockmarks spread out over 1,300 square kilometers which makes this area the largest known pockmark field in North America. However, Seafloor pockmarks have been found elsewhere around the world, and have been associated with releases of methane gas or other fluids from the seafloor.

MV Derbyshire

MV Derbyshire is the biggest British registered merchant ship ever to have been lost at sea. Built in 1976, she was an oil/bulk/ore (OBO) carrier. A Liverpool registered ship, she was owned by the local firm Bibby Line.She was lost in September 1980 in the South China Seas during typhoon Orchid, on its route from Canada to Japan. All 44 people on board died, including 42 crew members and 2 of their wives. The header was only 4 years old when she sank. On 15 September 1980, the search commenced but was called off by 21 September as nothing was found and the ship was declared lost.The families of those who died were then told that the Derbyshire had been lost. They were devastated and could not understand how such an enormous ship could have disappeared without a trace. On 18 November 1986 another one of Derbyshire’s sister ships, MV Kowloon Bridge developed severe deck cracking at frame 65 in the North Atlantic.On 20 November she anchored in Bantry Bay and was put in the sea again, two days later. She then lost her rudder and went aground on rocks in the South Irish Sea. Shortly after that, she broke her back near frame 65. Due to the sinking of the sister ship, MV Derbyshire was also found in 1994.

The Big Fin Squid

Bigfin squid sightings are incredibly rare. The creatures live thousands of feet below the surface of the ocean, and only about a dozen sightings have ever been reported.It’s only been about 20 years since the bigfin squid family was officially described by scientists. Bigfin squids are widely distributed throughout the world’s deep ocean, and they can live deeper than any other known squid. While the squid seen in this video was at 2,385 meters, the current depth record for a bigfin squid is 4,735 meters.Large fins and long appendages i.e. eight arms and two tentacles with elbow-like bends give the bigfin squid its distinctive appearance. These squids can exceed 6 meters in length. However, that’s mostly arms and tentacles. The largest known bigfin squid was 6.4 meters long. Its arms and tentacles were 6.1 meters long which is 20 times the length of its body. These rare deep-sea sightings add to our knowledge of such an elusive and intriguing genus and reinforce the value of imagery as a tool in deep-sea squid research.

Giant Phantom JellyFish

Out of the darkness of the ocean’s midnight zone, MBARI’s remotely operated vehicle spots a billowing crimson curtain. Moving in for a closer look, the submersible’s lights reveal the giant phantom jellyfish.The bell of this deep-sea denizen is more than 3.3 feet and trails four ribbon-like oral arms that can grow to more than 10 meters in length. This is one of only nine times that MBARI scientists have spotted the elusive 30 feet long creature across the institute’s many thousands of submarine dives. The giant phantom jelly was first collected in 1899. Since then, scientists have only encountered this animal about 100 times, according to MBARI.

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