Over the past years, world governments and scientific communities have dedicated the most part of their time and resources to analyze, understand, and ultimately conquer space. However, the ocean floor still conceals its secrets, better than the moon hides its face from our telescopes. A recent discovery in the behavior of one of the oddest species of fish swimming in dark waters confirms this claim. Surviving through centuries, the ghost shark takes its place among the Earth’s oldest creatures.
According to the scientists, these prehistoric sharks have been inhabiting the planet since before dinosaurs roamed the Earth. Moreover, because they prefer to live their lives in the deep, approximately 8,500 feet below the surface, ghost sharks have eluded the scientists and their attempts to study and better understand them.
Chimaera Caught on Camera
In 2099, a team of researchers from the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute in California caught a ghost shark on camera by accident. While an ROV (remotely operated vehicle) was investigating the ocean floor, a ghost shark sum up to the camera. The researchers believe that the light emitted by the vehicle might have attracted the shark which started to circle the ROV.
Even though the mysterious creature was caught on camera, the team of researchers could not tell for sure if the shark is actually a representative of the Hydrolagus Trolli or not. In order to better understand the nature of the fist, the Aquarium Research Institute briefed a team of experts from the Pacific Shark Research Center about the recording.
Dave Ebert, one of the experts said that in order to reach a solid conclusion, the team of investigators needed a DNA sample. However, because the ghost shark lives in the depths the sample would be difficult to obtain.
Ghost Shark Habitat
Up until recently, it was believed that the ghost shark, also referred to as chimaera, thrived in the southern Pacific Ocean off of New Caledonia, New Zealand, and Australia. However, the video shows the ghost shark swimming in water off of Hawaii and California. Furthermore, it was previously thought that these creatures preferred flat and soft-bottom terrain. Nevertheless, the ghost shark captured on camera is seen swimming in a rocky area of the ocean floor.
Moreover, as opposed to other species who spend their lives in the dark waters of the Pacific, the chimaera seems to be attracted to bright light, as well. If it turns out that the fish recorded by the team of researchers is indeed a pointy-nose blue chimaera, the scientists have a lot more work to do to in order to fully understand the mysterious creature’s behavior. If the fish is something other than a chimaera, the team of researchers might have discovered a new species swimming in the dark.
Image Source: Flickr