Faceless fish among weird deep-sea haul


A "faceless" fish and other freaky and wonderful creatures, many of them new species, have been discovered during a world-first exploration of a deep-sea abyss off Australia, scientists said today.

The month-long journey on "The Investigator" took place on the country's eastern seas, where scientists surveyed life forms in a dark, cold, underwater canyon plunging four kilometers below the surface, Phys.org reports.

Other species discovered include carnivorous sponges, bright red rock crabs, blind sea spiders and coffinfish.

O'Hara said that it was the first time that the fish has been seen again since 1873 when one of these creatures was scooped up from the waters near Papua New Guinea by the crews of the British ship HMS Challenger. A disturbing alien-like faceless fish plucked from the depths of the seabed off Australia will haunt your dreams.

The global crew on board The Investigator research vessel has pulled up some wonderfully freaky specimens from a journey to the bottom of the sea, including a "faceless fish" that hasn't been seen since 1873.

A team of scientists found a mysterious faceless fish during an exploration in deep Australian waters, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) reported today.

'This little fish looks incredible because the mouth is actually situated at the bottom of the animal so when you look side-on you can't see any eyes, you can't see any nose or gills or mouth, ' Dr O'Hara told AAP via satellite phone from the research vessel Investigator on Wednesday.

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"On the video camera we saw a kind of chimaera that whizzed by - that is very, very rare in Australian waters", she said.

Now and again, marine researchers pull out a new fish species from the depths of oceans that looks out of this world.

"It's got eyes way under the surface but really you can't see any eyes", Di Bray tells Australia's ABC News.

"We haven't seen any sea monsters yet but the other day we latched onto something and we thought we had a big monster or some kind of whale".

The research voyage is due to conclude on 16 June.

"We know nothing about the abyss, and we need to know", said O'Hara.