These Deep Sea Creature Faves Are Mesmerizing and Mysterious

Nerdist will always be a good source of deep sea creature videos, but now you can also see some in person. Monterey Bay Aquarium’s new exhibit is home to dozens of deep sea creatures. Many are on display for the first time ever. For the research institute’s latest video, the team shares fun facts about some of their favorite oddities. The keepers and biologists at the aquarium are clearly as excited to see them in person as we would be!

Basket stars use their tangled limbs to feed. They are reminiscent of the tendrils from The Nightmare Before Christmas. While the bloody belly comb jelly (say that five times fast) looks more like the alien from The Abyss, which it could technically be.

The sea angel is a shell-less snail that swims around, well, angelically—until it’s time to eat! Its mouth opens to look more like devil horns or a demogorgon from Stranger Things. That’s a scary angel, though still not quite as scary as Doctor Who‘s weeping angels.

A deep sea creature named a sea angel

There’s also worms that eat the bones of dead whales and huge isopods that can go a year between big meals. The predatory tunicate looks like a translucent version of Super Mario‘s piranha plants flowers. Or Audrey II from Little Shop of Horrors.

To keep the creatures healthy in captivity, the team spent years developing aquarium technology that recreates deep sea conditions. This involves adjusting the pH and oxygen levels and lowering the water temperature.

Basket star, scene from Nightmare Before Christmas, tunicate, piranha plant

Now that more people will see deep sea animals, who knows what creators of sci-fi and horror movies will come up with next. As one of the aquarists says in the video, “If this exists on the bottom of the ocean, what else exists that we haven’t seen yet?” And don’t worry, if you can’t make it to the Monterey Bay Aquarium, Nerdist will be here with your deep sea critter content.

Melissa is Nerdist’s science & technology staff writer. She also moderates “science of” panels at conventions and co-hosts Star Warsologies, a podcast about science and Star Wars. Follow her on Twitter @melissatruth. 

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