Without a doubt, the depths of the ocean are both mesmerizing and terrifying. While the surface sparkles beautifully in the sun, we know very little about what lies below. Just ask these scientists, who discovered something incredible and never-before-seen while exploring a shipwreck. Needless to say, they felt stunned!
Spotted A Mystery Creature
No questions asked: shipwrecks are incredible. Of course, as children, when most of us thought about shipwrecks, we thought of sunken pirate ships filled with forgotten gold. While few wrecks have buried treasure, they do often contain incredible surprises. Most recently, a team of scientists encountered an enormous mystery creature inside a shipwreck. That’s right! In fact, the animal was so strange that the group who discovered it, from OceanX’s research vessel, the OceanXplorer, studied the footage for a year before releasing it to the public.
During an expedition in the Red Sea, the team of the OceanXplorer, they caught the creature multiple times on radar. Finally, after missing a few times, they captured the mystery creature on camera while exploring the Pella shipwreck, nearly 2,800 feet below the surface. If you’re thinking of a terrifying shark with massive jaws, think again…
As you can see in the hair-raising photo above, the discovered looks more like a squid. In fact, the zoologist and squid expert Mike Vecchione said that it is indeed a squid – just not one he’s seen before! Many online have wondered if it’s a giant squid (Architeuthis dux). However, Vecchione says it’s not a giant squid. Instead, it looks more like a purple back flying squid, just much larger. In fact, Vecchione believes that they may have discovered a new,” giant form” of the purpleback flying squid. This could mean that there are giant versions of many different squids, not just one.
After studying the video for months, OceanX, Vecchione, and his partner is studying the squid, OceanX science program lead Mattie Rodriguez, have decided to release the video online. Rodriguez says that the squid is likely much larger than a human, hence the “mystery creature” label. She was among the first to see the creature swim past the bow of the Pella in 2020. Rodriguez says the encounter changed her life forever. “I was frozen in absolute shock,” she said – the scientist couldn’t take her eyes off the squid! Later on, the crew ended up talking more about the squid than the shipwreck!
For now, OceanX plans to continue to explore the ocean, focusing on research, outreach, discovery, and protection. In addition to searching the oceans, OceanX also published a large variety of videos that help viewers better understand the ocean. “How do species in the Red Sea thrive where others would die?” is one of the company’s most popular videos on YouTube. OceanX hopes that by helping people know and understand the creatures of the deep, like this new squid, will result in people taking better care of the oceans. After all, it would be devastating to lose our beautiful, diverse underwater world.