Status: 20.11.2023, 21:03 PM
By: Martina Lippl
In the darkness of the deep sea, this predatory fish is rarely seen. Researchers discover a specimen in the ocean by chance.
Moss Landing – The depths of the sea are still full of mysteries. During a diving expedition, US scientists have come across a "fascinating fish". This unusual moment in the ocean was captured on video by a diving robot. Footage shows a deep-sea frogfish with its "invisibility cloak".
Mystery in the Ocean: Researchers Film Rare Deep-Sea Creature with "Cloak of Invisibility"
The fish, also known as the "Dreaming Frog", is something very special, according to marine researchers. Specimens of the genus Oneirodes are kept hidden. Their skin is ultra-black and barely visible to the human eye.
Fascinating: Rare deep-sea fish with an invisibility cloak sighted off the coast of California for the first time. © MBARI
"In fact, the dream ranglerfish are the blackest black fish in the ocean," the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) writes on Instagram. To this end, the Marine Institute shares a video of this unique encounter. In the short clip, the silhouette of a dreamer monkfish can be seen. The images were taken off the coast of California (USA) at a depth of 781 meters in Monterey Canyon in September.
Mystery in the Ocean – Deep-Sea Frogfish Are Rare to See, Even for Researchers
"Dreamers are stealthy predators that lie in wait for their prey in secret. Instead of actively hunting for food, they let it come to them, which is one reason we see them so rarely," explains Bruce Robison, principal investigator of the MBARI team, in a press release.
The deep-sea frogfish is also called a dreamer because the first specimens seemed too fantastic to scientists at the end of the 19th century to be real and looked like something out of a dream.
Deep-sea frogfish possess ultra-black skin, a glowing lure to attract prey, and sharp teeth.
Almost a million euros gone: Managing director steals the entire assets of cross-country skiing club
The Merkur.de app is new: News from Bavaria, Germany and the world
Etna eruption in Italy: lava explosions, cities buried under ash – authorities react
Heart disease: Nutrition expert explains "complete disaster" at breakfast
She reaps incomprehension and criticism: Mother shows inexpensive Christmas gifts for her children
Fancy a voyage of discovery?
Its ultra-black appearance helps deep-sea frogfish (Oneirodes) hide from unsuspecting prey, the researchers said. The dark coloration absorbs the light emitted by the fish's glowing bait. The prey can't see the big mouth waiting just behind it. The skin therefore functions like an "invisibility cloak".
In the darkness of the ocean, researchers film rare deep-sea fish
The dreamer monkfish took out his bait and "fished" for food. However, when the diving robot came a little closer, the fish stowed the bait again, the researchers report.
During the deep-sea expedition, the scientists actually collected tiny spiny organisms (so-called feodari). But then a dreaming deep-sea monkfish appeared in front of her camera for the first time. According to the MBARI team, they took advantage of this unique opportunity to film one of these extremely rare deep-sea devils in 4K.
Apparently a real stroke of luck. "In 35 years of deep-sea exploration, MBARI's ROVs have completed more than 7,300 successful dives and recorded more than 28,400 hours of video, yet we have only encountered the dreamer monkfish nine times."
Researchers are trying to explore the depths of the ocean. In more than eight kilometers below the surface of the sea, researchers have set a new record; for the deepest fish ever filmed. A creepy find in California, on the other hand, was made by beach walkers in October. (ml)