Sunday, March 6, 2016

Freaky Fish Down Under

A bizarre ocean creature with protruding eyes and dozens of needle-like teeth has been captured in Australian-- the second sea monster in less than a week.
The bizarre creature was caught off the Victoria state coast by a fishing trawler.  Local experts said the animal may be an Endo's Goosefish-- more commonly known as "Monkfish" or the "Sea Devil".   Not typically found in Australian waters, the species can grow up to five feet long.

Angler fishes possess some of the most impressive teeth and ensure that once prey enters their mouths, there is no chance of escape.  The pectoral and ventral fins are so articulated as to perform the functions of feet, and the its body has the ability to change its color to match its surroundings, allowing the fish to conceal itself on the ocean floor as it waits for its prey.  Monkfish also possess an enormously distensible stomach, with which they can swallow victims as large as themselves

In the previous week, another peculiar deep sea creature which looks like a cross between a crocodile and a dolphin washed ashore on the banks of Lake Macquarie in southeast Australia.
There has been great disagreement on social media regarding the identification of the animal-- some saying it is a large hairtail and others suggesting the picture has either been photoshopped or taken somewhere else

Local experts believe it is a pike eel, native to deep waters on the east coast of Australia.  The creatures are commonly caught and discarded by fishermen when hauling in a large catch. The pike eel is known to thrash around violently once hooked, damaging fishing equipment and forcing fishermen to cut their lines.
The sighting at Lake Macquarie comes after a group of fishermen pulled a terrifying frilled shark (named for its six pairs of frill-like gills along with its dorsal fins)  from the ocean in southeastern Australia.   The shark's origin dates back 80 million years and it is only one of two species still alive from this period.   Growing up to six feet in length, the creature is believed to be the source of reports of mythological "sea serpents."

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