10 Strange Animals in the Mariana Trench

10 Strange Animals in the Mariana Trench

The Mariana Trench is in the western Pacific Ocean, around 200 kilometers, or 124 miles, from the Mariana Islands. The trench is the deepest point in the worlds’ oceans.

The Mariana Trench reaches 1,580 miles and 2,550 kilometers and a maximum width of 69 kilometers or 43 miles. The maximum known depth is 10,984 meters or 36,037 feet. The water pressure at the bottom of the trench is incredible, more than 1,071 times the normal atmospheric pressure at sea level. Living in this excellent habitat are some of the world’s most exciting and surprising animals. Explore a few of them in this https://cedointercultural.org/‘s article below.

10 Strange Animals in the Mariana Trench

Dumbo Octopus

The deepest known living octopus

The dumbo octopus, also known as grimpotheuthis, is a genus of pelagic umbrella octopuses. The name originates from the creature’s resemblance to the character Dumbo from the 1941 Disney film of the same name. The Dumbo octopus was first discovered around 1883, but the first specimen was not seen until the 1990s after the first deep-sea submersible vessels were invented.

The dumbo octopus is small compared to other octopods, averaging between 20 and 30 centimeters. The octopus’s gelatinous body allows it to exist at the highly pressured depths it prefers. Extreme pressure keeps its body together, and if brought to the surface, its body would not be able to work correctly.

Angler Fish

It has a bright lure on the end of its head to lure prey

The angler fish is a well-known marine creature thanks to the success of the film Finding Nemo. It’s a reasonably famous creature that’s quite distinctive due to the light protruding from its head. It has an unusually shaped body and sharp teeth. The females usually grow to around 8 inches long, and the males to only an inch in length. The males fuse themselves with the females, turning two individuals into one.

Frilled Shark

Species is more than 80 million years old

The frilled shark was discovered in the 19th century by German ichthyologist Ludwig H.P. Döderlein. It is often referred to as a “living fossil” due to its eery appearance and the shape of its mouth.

The shark has an eel-like body that’s dark brown to grey in color and amphistyly, referring to the articulation of the jaws to the head. Their teeth are widely spaced between 19 and 28 in the upper jaw and 21 to 29 in the lower jaw.

They live near the ocean floor, such as in and around the Mariana Trench, and near biologically productive areas.

Goblin Shark

Still unclear what the unusual snout is for

The goblin shark is a rare species of shark. Its unusual and “creepy” appearance is often described as fossil-like (similar to the frilled shark). It has pink-toned skin and a distinctive snout shape. It is elongated and flat with a protruding jaw and skinny, incredibly sharp teeth.

They can grow to be around 10-13 feet in length and are rarely seen by human beings. This is mostly due to the fact that they live so deep in the ocean, around 100 meters or 330 feet.

Telescope Octopus

A transparent octopus with tubular eyes

The telescope octopus is a transparent, eight-armed octopus that is almost entirely colorless. Their arms are the same size, and they are the only octopus to have tubular eyes. It is incredibly unusual to observe and was originally documented by Dr. William Evans Hoyle in 1885. The octopus is a rare species, meaning there is little that scientists, and the general public, know about the marine creature. But it’s believed to be a close relative of the glass octopus.

Zombie Worms

Target the fat that is inside the bone to eat

Zombie worms, also known as Osedax, are a type of deep-sea siboglinid polychaetes. The word “Osedax” means “bone-eater” in Latin and refers to the worm’s ability to bore into and eat bones from whale carcasses. They do so in an attempt to reach lipids enclosed inside the bone. They use special root tissues for bone boring.

Barreleye Fish

It has a transparent skull to see potential predators above it

The Barreleye Fish is another interesting deep-sea creature. They are also sometimes known as spook fish and are found in the temperate waters of the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans. The fish are named for the shape of their eyes, which look like tubes or barrels. They are directed upwards in order to allow the fish to detect prey more easily.

Deep-sea Dragonfish

A very small deep-sea apex predator

The Deep-sea Dragonfish, also known as the scaleless dragonfish, is a deep-sea predator. It, like the angler fish, produces its own light. They have large teeth, especially compared to their size. The fish are only six inches long, but they have a dragon-like feature that makes them appear as a vicious predator. It creates its light through a process known as bioluminescence. The light is created through the animal’s photophore. The fish uses it to attract prey and potential mates.

Sea Cucumber

Make up the vast majority of sea life on the deep-sea floor, and breathe through their anus

The sea cucumber is a small echinoderm from the class Holothuroidea. They are marina animals with leather-textured skin. Their bodies are long and found on the seafloor around the world. There are around 1,700 species of holothurian around the world, but most are concentrated around the Asian Pacific region. Some of these live in the depths of the Mariana Trench.

They are named for their shape, which clearly resembles a cucumber. Sometimes, sea cucumbers are gathered for human consumption, but they play an important role in marine ecosystems. They break down detritus and other matter, cleaning their ecosystems.


An incredibly deep-sea fish that is scaleless would implode if it goes to the surface

Snailfish are an unusual and interesting species that live in the Arctic to Antarctic Oceans. There are more than 410 species of snailfish known to science. But there are other undescribed species. They live in depths ranging from the surface to 26,200 feet or around 8,000 meters. Unfortunately, snailfish are uncommonly studied, and little is known about their lives or habits. They are scaleless, though, with loose skin. Their teeth are small, and they have prominent sensory pores on their heads.


Do any animals live in the Mariana Trench?

Yes, many different animals live in the Mariana Trench. Most of these are rarely seen by human beings and have different, interesting attributes.

Is the Mariana Trench toxic?

Deep in the Mariana Trench, there are still examples of human-caused pollution. For example, scientists have discovered mercury pollution there.

Does Megalodon exist in Mariana Trench?

It is very unlikely that Megalodon still exists. But, if it did, it would live in the upper part of the water over the trench rather than in its depths.

What Lives at The Bottom of The Mariana Trench?

What Lives at The Bottom of The Mariana Trench?

Imagine a mountain taller than Mount Everest. Or a canyon fives times larger than the Grand Canyon. Now, picture it in the deepest part of the ocean in a place untouched by humankind. That is the Mariana Trench. Could anything live in such a place? And if so, what kind of Mariana Trench animals are you likely to find?

Discover what lives at the bottom of the Mariana Trench, including how it formed and exciting facts that most people don’t know about this mysterious place. Lets found them here in https://cedointercultural.org/‘s article.

What is the Mariana Trench?

A trench is a long, deep depression on the ocean floor that typically runs parallel to a plate boundary. The Mariana Trench, or Marianas Trench, is in the western Pacific Ocean about 124 miles east of the Mariana Islands. The Mariana Trench is the deepest oceanic trench on earth.

This scar-shaped trough has a maximum depth of 36,037 feet, almost seven miles. The deepest part of the ocean known to man is at the southern end of the trench, the Challenger Deep, with a depth of 36,201 feet (unrepeated measurements). To date, there have only been 12 dives into the Mariana Trench, totaling 22 people.

While the water at this depth is frigid, around 34° to 39° Fahrenheit, the intense pressure is what makes this area so dangerous. The pressure is 1,000 times higher than the standard sea-level atmospheric pressure.

How did this cryptic, dark trench form, and what perplexing creatures live inside?

What Lives at The Bottom of The Mariana Trench?

How Did the Mariana Trench Form?

The seafloor of the western Pacific is 180 million years old, some of the oldest in the world. This ancient crust contains thin plates that float on molten rock (mantle). Sometimes these plates crash into each other, which causes one plate to plunge into the mantle while the other rides over the top.

This process is known as subduction, and the movement causes trenches, volcanoes, earthquakes, and tsunamis to form. The Mariana Plate and the Pacific Plate are responsible for creating the Mariana Trench, which sits on this subduction zone.

While the process sounds easy enough, subduction at the Mariana Plate has transpired for over 50 million years. The trench is in the shape of an arc, and researchers theorize its formation is due to the Mariana Plate breaking off from the Philippine Plate. The creation of the Mariana microplate (that inevitably collides with the Pacific Plate) is responsible for the Mariana Islands, which consist of active and dormant volcanoes. While this system continues to grow, scientists believe that eventually, the Mariana microplate will dissipate.

What Lives at the Bottom of the Mariana Trench?

Mariana Trench animals include xenophyophores, amphipods, and small sea cucumbers (holothurians) which all dwell at the bottom of the ocean’s deepest depression. Animals living in these depths survive in complete darkness and extreme pressure, consuming chemicals (like methane or sulfur) or those farther down the food chain.

Scientists studied these creatures found on video footage from the James Cameron 2012 expedition. Unfortunately, there is not much evidence to work with due to the extreme dangers of exploring the deep sea. With over 80% of the ocean unexplored, the possibility of new species is immense.


Xenophyophores (“bearer of foreign bodies”) are giant deep sea amoebas among the world’s largest living single-celled organisms. These protozoans live in the deepest parts of the ocean, and not much is known about them because their delicate frames make them hard to collect for research.

These organisms come in various shapes and sizes and can resemble spherical sponges, frilly sponges, tetrahedra (four-sided figures), or flattened discs. Xenophyophores are essentially lumps of cytoplasm, a viscous fluid containing nuclei.

They secrete glue-like strings of their fecal matter that attach to minerals and other objects in the environment like skeletal remains and use it to form an exoskeleton known as a test. Xenophyophores move along the sea floor like slugs and have no known predators.


Amphipods are small crustaceans found all over the ocean, but one species, in particular, inhabits this deep sea trench. The Hirondellea Gigas is a shrimp-like creature, around two inches in length, that eats fallen wood on the sea floor. These creatures can go without food for a long time but will eat almost anything and gorge themselves to the point of bursting.

These amphipods produce a wood-eating enzyme in their gut that scientists believe can be used to make ethanol. Ethanol helps manufacture drugs, plastics, and cosmetics.


Holothurians are a new species of luminous sea cucumber. And while these squishy creatures resemble a vegetable, they are actually animals closely related to starfish and urchins. Sea cucumbers are peculiar organisms with an unusual defense mechanism. When threatened, the sea cucumber contracts its muscles and forces its internal organs out of its anus.

The cucumbers observed in the deep trenches of the earth are a bright violet color and transparent. The most famous deep sea cucumber is nicknamed the “the headless chicken monster.” It may sound terrifying but watching this unusual species move through water looks like a strange yet graceful water ballet.

Mariana Snailfish

The Mariana Hadal Snailfish is the deepest fish species ever recovered from the Mariana Trench. Researchers caught this record-breaking fish 27,460 feet below sea level, and scientists theorize the maximum depth possible for fish is 27,900 feet. This species of snailfish adapted to live in extreme pressure and complete darkness. Its skin is transparent, it doesn’t have sight, and it is one of the top predators in the Mariana Trench.

Interesting Facts About the Mariana Trench

  • In 1960, Don Walsh (US Army Lieutenant) and Jacques Piccard (engineer) were the first people to descend into the depths of the Mariana Trench.
  • The United States controls the deepest part of the trench, the Challenger Deep, and dedicated it as a national monument.
  • If you put Mount Everest (the tallest mountain in the world) inside the Mariana Trench, its peak would still be 7,000 feet below sea level.
  • The Mariana Trench, the deepest place on earth, has extraordinary pollution levels. The levels outpace those found in a heavily polluted Chinese River.
  • Divers inside the trench have recovered plastic bags and candy wrappers. Humans still affect even the most remote places in the world.
  • Researchers recorded strange metallic sounds from the Mariana Trench. After much debate, they concluded the sound was coming from baleen whales.
  • What lives at the bottom of the Mariana Trench? New and unique creatures, plus many more scientists have not discovered!