The Strangest Discoveries Found in The Ocean
The ocean is a sea of endless wonder that has revealed some of the most incredible discoveries. The ocean covers three-fourths of our planet, and its depths are daunting. It goes so deep that we have never come close to exploring even a fraction of the ocean floors.
However, humans are always looking to find and explore every inch of our planet. Some of the discoveries reveal the incredible past of our existence.
The Black Sea River
It's hard to imagine that there could be a river in the ocean, but it is entirely possible. It is the same as a river on land. The Black Sea actually contains a river at the bottom of its bed.
The river also consists of trees, leaves, river banks, waterfalls, and sedimentary and flowing waters. The river would be considered the world's sixth largest if it met the official definition.
The sarcastic fringehead has been found on the ocean's surface, but they tend to remain in depths going down several hundred feet. It is a territorial fish that is known for its strange appearance with its large mouth being its most prominent feature.
The fish only grow to be about a foot long, but their mouth, when open, can appear to be as long as the body of the fish itself. Its mouth gives it a scary appearance, making it look like it's straight out of a sci-fi movie.
Most of us have a strong fear of dark waters because we have no idea what is actually down there. There is no place in the world where fear is more palpable than the Mariana Trench.
The trench is known as the deepest point on the planet, reaching down more than thirty-six thousand feet into the Pacific Ocean. You could even put Mount Everest in the trench and it would not reach the top.
There are many different kinds of sharks in the ocean and they come in all different shapes and sizes. The frilled shark is just as intimidating as any other shark.
It has an eel-like appearance, can grow to almost seven feet long, and can hunt its prey in the dark with expert precision. They are found in the deepest and darkest parts of the ocean, even being found as deep as fifty-one hundred feet.
Galleon San Jose Shipwreck
One of the most financially valuable discoveries was the Galleon San Jose shipwreck. It was discovered off the coast of Colombia near the city of Cartagena and was estimated to be worth roughly seventeen billion dollars. It was a Spanish ship that sank during a battle in the seventeenth century.
The ship was carrying millions in gold, silver coins, and emeralds. However, for almost four decades, there has been a battle between the founders of the ship and the Colombian government over the rightful owner of the treasures.
Ice Finger Of Death
Brinicles are known as the ice finger of death, and they are incredible natural phenomena that are found at the bottom of the ocean. The phenomenon is caused by a freezing process involving the ocean's salt only underneath giant blocks of ice floating at sea.
They get their popular name because of their intimidating appearance. They are not often captured on camera but look like a water tornado made up of ice. The water actually freezes around it as the funnel spins and picks up water creatures in its path.
The giant squid is a well-known underwater creature and one of the world's most elusive sea specimens. It wasn't until 2001 that humans saw the giant squid for the first time, and a few years later, it was photographed for the first time.
It can reach a length of forty-three feet long, including its tentacles. In order to capture the squid on camera, scientists have taken extensive time and voyages to the deepest parts of the ocean.
Lord Krishna's Lost City
The Lost City of Lord Krishna, also known as the City of Dwarka, is located off the coast of India. It is one of the most researched and documented underwater sites in the world.
Scientists believe that the city dates back more than nine thousand years and was one of the busiest ports in the country back before it was entirely submerged underwater. It is still underwater and has many of its stone structures and streets still intact.
Scientists believe the Uluburun shipwreck dates back to 1305 BC, which makes it one of the most intact discoveries for a wreck of this age. It was found off the coast of Turkey in the Mediterranean Sea.
The ship was believed to be carrying cargo for a variety of reasons but mainly because of the extensive gifts and items found at the bottom of the ocean floor next to the vessel. Some of the items found include jewelry, copper, clay jars, instruments, the golden seal of Nefertiti, and elephant and hippo tusks.
Another discovery is the black dragonfish, which is one of the most intimidating creatures found in the sea. It is known for migrating to depths past sixteen hundred feet, where its pitch-black color blends in with the dark waters they live in.
They look like monsters with canine-like teeth, and sort of resemble a black eel with large eyes. They are also bioluminescent, giving off a light when they want to.
Apollo 11 Engines
One of the most incredible discoveries is the engines from the Saturn V rockets of the infamous Apollo 11 missions. They were found off Florida's coastal waters, about sixteen thousand feet below the ocean's surface.
The rocket engines fell to Earth after their launch as the rocket exited our atmosphere. They have wanted to bring them to the surface, but it is not an easy task considering their massive size and the depths at which they sit.
In the 1950s, scientists made an important find when they came across the Vasa shipwreck. The discovery helped scientists understand more about naval voyages during the seventeenth century when sea travel became the most prominent.
The Vasa was a Swedish warship that set sail in 1628 but sank after only traveling fourteen hundred yards. The ship was found mostly intact, with weapons, cannons, clothes, sails, coins, and even human remains.
Lost Mahabalipuram Pagodas
Mahabalipuram Pagodas is another lost city off the coast of India, but it was long considered a myth by many due to the lack of scientific evidence of its existence.
However, in 2004, a tsunami hit the Indian Ocean and showed large rock-like structures. They emerged from the water and were seen by many onlookers. After that, expeditions led to the discovery of the city.
SS Central America
The SS Central America is also known as the Ship of Gold, and it first set sail in 1857 from Panama, heading to New York City. The ship was transporting four hundred and seventy-seven passengers and one hundred and one crew members.
In addition, the ship was carrying almost ten tons of gold. Sadly, the ship sank six days after it set sail, taking four hundred and twenty lives with it. The cause was a hurricane in the Atlantic Ocean, right off the coast of the Carolinas. The ship went down just short of its final destination.
Another discovery was the pelican eel, also referred to as a gulper eel. It is a deep sea fish that lives at depths where water becomes too dark to see.
It gets its name because its mouth resembles that of a pelican due to the enormous size it can open up to when swallowing its prey. It can actually get bigger than the eel's actual body itself, making it scary and dangerous.
The Antikythera mechanism was found off the coast of the Greek island of Antikythera and is believed to be associated with ancient Greek civilization.
It was actually found among ship wreckage, and it is believed to have been designed thousands of years ago by Greek scientists. They designed it to measure astrological occurrences and to be a calendar, which was far ahead of its time.
Ancient Roman Medication
A ship called the Relitto del Pozzino sank more than two thousand years ago off the coast of Tuscany, Italy. The Roman ship was discovered in the 1980s and 1990s by an Italian archeology team. The most incredible discovery was what was inside two tin cans.
The cans had remained sealed for several millennia, and the pills inside were still perfectly preserved. Scientists believed that these pills were remnants and insight into ancient medicine used by the Romans. They think they were most likely used as eye medication.
Diving Bell Spider
We don't usually fear spiders in the ocean, but we should because there are diving bell spiders in the water. It is the only spider species in the world that spends almost all of its entire life underwater.
They only come up for a second of air once a day or so. They have an intimidating appearance, with their mid-brown color and silver belly. You most definitely do not want to come into contact with this spider.
Near the Mexican ruins of an ancient village called Mayapan sits a flooded sinkhole called Sac Uayum. The underwater cave is sort of an urban legend to the Mexican villagers that live near and around it.
It causes them to fear because of its place in their history as an important religious site where sacrifices were once made. In a recent search of the area, the remains of human bones and elongated skulls were found, which scientists were not able to completely understand.
Underwater New Jersey Locomotives
One of the eeriest discoveries in the ocean is a locomotive graveyard. The graveyard was found off the coast of New Jersey, and they found several fifteen-ton locomotives in incredible condition. They were almost one hundred feet below the surface.
The trains were originally built in the 1850s, but there are no records of steam engines. Experts believe they were being transported via sea and had to be pushed off ships to prevent them from sinking.
Another fish discovery was the fangtooth fish, which got its name from its teeth. The fish live in the deep sea, as far down as sixteen thousand feet. They are one of the deepest living fish in the world.
The fangtooth fish's appearance is intimidating because of its large head, and its fang-like teeth protruding from its mouth. Its teeth protrude so much that it is unable to close its mouth.
Giant Underwater Pyramids
In the Atlantic Ocean, off the coast of Portugal, is an anomaly that experts have been unable to fully understand or explain. The measurements of a structure were found using oceanic GPS technology.
Researchers believe that two giant pyramids of ancient times sit underwater thousands of feet below the surface. The GPS reads that the structure's base is eight thousand square feet and roughly one hundred and fifty feet tall. However, there is very little explanation for their existence.
The Zhemchug Canyon was discovered long ago by scientists, and it is impressive. It is a natural underwater canyon located in the center of the Bering Sea. It is important for many species of ocean wildlife, which call it home.
The discovery was truly astounding because it sits 8,530 feet deep and is twenty-five hundred feet bigger than the Grand Canyon. Explorers have never been able to explore the full extent of its space because of how deep it sits.
The giant isopod is one of the stranger creatures found in the ocean. It has a rather intimidating appearance and is similar to a massive tick that lives underwater. They can be as big as a foot and a half long and are fairly massive in overall size, weighing up to three and a half pounds.
They have transparent shells that act as a defense mechanism, scaly arms, and beady eyes. They are deep-sea inhabitants that go as deep as seven thousand feet.
The Titanic is probably the most famous and well-known underwater discovery of all time. It is also one of the most well-documented ship failures in human history. The ship sank more than a century ago after hitting an iceberg in the Atlantic Ocean on its maiden voyage.
It was the largest oceanic catastrophe in history, with fifteen hundred people dying. The wreckage was discovered in 1985, twelve thousand feet down. The bow and stem were found a third of a mile apart from one another, and much of what was inside the ship was still intact.
Lake Michigan Stone Henge
A series of stones were found in Lake Michigan (not the ocean, but still in a body of water) in 2007. The stones were arranged in the shape of a circle and were discovered roughly forty feet below the surface of the lake.
It has a strong resemblance to Great Britain's Stonehenge and is thought to be thousands of years old. A carving of a mastodon was discovered on one of the pillars, meaning its origins could stretch all the way back to the last ice age.
The Ancient City Of Alexandria
The Ancient City of Alexandria was ruled by Egypt's last Pharaoh, Cleopatra. It is believed that the city disappeared underwater due to a series of natural disasters, including tidal waves and earthquakes.
The city was hidden for almost sixteen hundred years and was rediscovered in 1998. It was almost perfectly preserved under the sea, and there have been plans to build tunnels throughout the underwater city, making it the world's first underwater museum.
A Sunken Sculpture Park
There is a deep-sea gallery of sculptures in the Molinere Beausejour Marine Protected Area of the Caribbean Sea, off the coast of Grenada. It is located between four and five meters deep, and the collection of statues is designed to enhance a conserved section of the ocean.
It is also designed to highlight how nature makes a permanent mark on the physical world over time. The sculptures are life-sized casts of local children, and most are covered in sea vegetation and barnacles. Marine life has also taken up residency in the area.
The Yonaguni Complex
The Yonaguni complex has been one of Japan's great aquatic mysteries since it was discovered in 1985. It is an ancient structure that is submerged off the southern coast of the Ryukyu Islands.
It has sparked a heated debate on whether it's a man-made or a natural formation. The formation is made up of fine sandstone and mudstone and is thought to be millions of years old.
The Bimini Road
The Bimini Road is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the Bahamas, and it is a mysterious pathway running twenty feet beneath the ocean's surface.
The road was first discovered in 1930 and has since been a popular sight for scuba enthusiasts. However, its origins are a mystery, as most experts argue whether the road is man-made or the result of Mother Nature.
Where the North American and Eurasian continent plates meet is called the Silfra Crack. It continuously separates two centimeters per year and is a popular dive spot for underwater enthusiasts.
The water is crystal clear because of the cold temperatures and underground lava. Scientists claim that some of the world's cleanest water can be found there. The Silfra Crack is in Iceland's Thingvellir National Park and is literally between two continents.
Christ Of The Abyss
The Christ of the Abyss is a sculpture of Jesus Christ and was dropped into the Medertarrian Sea by artist Guido Galletti. It is a bronze statue that can be found between Camogli and Portofino on the Italian Riviera.
The statue was dropped in the sea in 1954 in the same spot where the first Italian scuba diver, Dario Gonzatti, tragically lost his life. The statue has his arms raised as if giving thanks and is a major tourist attraction.
The Baltic Sea Anomaly
The Baltic Sea anomaly is more than ninety meters beneath the waves of the Baltic Sea. It is an odd object that resembles the Millennium Falcon from the Star Wars movies.
It was Swedish explorer Peter Lindberg and his Ocean X team who found the object in 2011. Some conspiracy theorists claimed it was proof aliens had visited Earth. However, it has been concluded that it is simply a glacial deposit.
Ghost Fleet Of Truk Lagoon
Truk Lagoon is a large area that makes up Micronesia and consists of more than sixty sunken ships. Truk Island was once a Japanese naval base that was destroyed during World War II.
There were several battleships and watercraft that sank during the bombing. One of the wrecks that you can explore includes the popular Fujikawa Maru Cargo Ship. The ship has now been overrun with colorful coral and underwater wildlife.
The MS Zenobia was a Swedish ship built in 1979 but tragically sank just a year later on its maiden voyage. The ship is about five hundred and ninety feet long and ninety-two feet wide.
The wreck is known as the Zen, and it rests on its port side near Larnaca, Cyprus. Trucks litter the seabed outside of the wreckage, with two still hanging from the chains on the deck. The ship makes for an impressive sight as soon as you enter the area.
SS President Coolidge
The SS President Coolidge was a luxury ocean liner built in 1931 and served as a troopship until it was sunk by mines in Espiritu Santo in the New Hebrides.
There were two casualties when the ship sank, including Robert Reid, who was working in the engine room, and Captain Elwood Joseph Euart, who rescued men from the infirmary but could not escape himself. The shipwreck can be explored by divers, who will see guns, cannons, Jeeps, personal supplies, helmets, and so much more.
The USS Oriskany, also known as "The Mighty O," was a United States Navy Essex-class aircraft carrier. It was also the first naval warship and largest artificial reef ever to be intentionally sunk in US coastal waters.
The ship was built right after WWII and could hold up to eighty planes. However, after twenty-five years of service, the Oriskany was decommissioned in 1976. The ship sits upright on the ocean floor.
The SS Thistlegorm was a British Merchant Navy ship that was bombed down in the Red Sea. It was built in 1940 but sunk by German bomber aircraft in 1941. The shipwreck was found near Ras Muhammad and is now a popular diving site.
Its structure has been well-preserved, and the ship contains a wealth of WWII artifacts, including equipment, boots, rifles, motorcycles, and locomotives.
In 1718, the Queen Anne's Revenge sank off the coast of North Carolina after Blackbeard ran it into the ground while entering an inlet. David M. Ullian said of Blackbeard, "Blackbeard often fought, or simply showed himself, wearing a big feathered tricorn, and having multiple swords, knives, and pistols at his disposal. It was reported in the General History of the Pirates that he had hemp and lighted matches woven into his enormous black beard during battle. Accounts of people who saw him fighting say that they thought he 'looked like the devil' with his fearsome face and the smoke cloud around his head. This image, which he cultivated, has made him the premier image of the seafaring pirate."
In 2011, researchers recovered a two-thousand-pound cannon from the ocean that belonged to Blackbeard's ship. Other cannons have been recovered, including dishes, gold, medical supplies, prisoner shackles, African jewelry, and small weaponry.
The Barreleye Fish has a transparent head with green and shiny barrel-like eyes. They are also referred to as spook fish, and their eyes are generally directed upwards in order to detect the silhouettes of available prey.
Their face looks somewhat confusing because they have eye-like organs above their tiny mouths, which are their olfactory organs. They live in the deep dark sea and look like horrifying extraterrestrial creatures.
John Doe Skeletons
There are a lot of skeletons underwater, even in the deepest and darkest parts of the sea. There have been many instances where divers have accidentally found the remains of John Does.
A group of archeologists found the oldest underwater skeleton, about twenty-one years old, from the most ancient shipwreck ever known to man, the Antikythera shipwreck. The ship was thought to have been sunk around 65 BC.
The Bloop is an ultra-low-frequency and high-amplitude underwater sound that was detected by the U.S. NOAA in 1997. It is thought that the sound was generated via non-tectonic cryoseisms from glacial movements.
David Wolman's theory was that "Fox's hunch is that the sound nicknamed Bloop is the most likely to come from some sort of animals because its signature is a rapid variation in frequency similar to that of sounds known to be made by marine beasts. There's one crucial difference, however; in 1997, Bloop was detected by sensors up to 4,800 km apart. That means it must be far louder than any whale noise, or any other animal noise for that matter. Is it even remotely possible that some creature bigger than any whale is lurking in the ocean depths? Or, perhaps more likely, something is much more efficient at making the sound?"
The Second Great Barrier Reef
The second Great Barrier Reef sits behind Australia's famous Great Barrier Reef. The reef is along the Caribbean coast of Belize. The limestone circles knit cover six thousand square kilometers and are estimated to be about ten thousand years old.
The rings were formed by dead algae called Halimeda. However, the depth is so great that only a few divers have been able to visit the reef. There are popular diving centers in San Pedro, Caye Caulker, and Placencia.
Earth once had a supercontinent called Gondwana that was discovered during an international effort to map the Perth Abyssal Plain in the Indian Ocean.
It is almost as big as Tasmania and was the microcontinent that connected India and Australia. The Gondwana pieces that once glued continents together became islands when the Indian and Australian coasts moved further apart.
Slightly south of the equator, between Africa and South America, there is a massive waterfall under the sea. There are currents that pour down a height that would do a skyscraper proud. Enormous waves similar to those found near beaches sometimes form and are called Kelvin-Helmholtz waves.
They appear when fluids travel together but at different speeds. It consists of two hundred and fifty waves following each other non-stop, the longest such show ever seen in the ocean.
USS Samuel B. Roberts
The USS Samuel B. Roberts was discovered in the Philippine Sea at just shy of twenty-three thousand feet. It is the deepest wreck ever found. The ship was the first to be named after Coxswain Samuel Booker Roberts, Jr.
"Sammy B. showed evidence of the incredible, ferocious fight that she waged against the cream of the Imperial Japanese Navy. There were shell holes. She obviously had taken a massive hit from a battleship on her stern quarter, with it basically blown apart." ----- Victor Vescovo.
Sir Ernest Shackleton's Ship
Sir Ernest Shackleton's ship, Endurance, was lost beneath the ice floes of the Weddell Sea in the Antarctic for more than a century. The ship set sail in 1914 to cross the Antarctic continent via the South Pole, but it never reached land.
It got stuck in sea ice and drifted northward until it was eventually crushed and sunk in 1915. In 2022, a crew of scientists and archeologists located the wreck at a depth of three thousand meters.
The Mary Rose
The Mary Rose was one of the most heavily armed and speedy warships in the English fleet. In 1545, it was leading the attack on a French invasion fleet in Portsmouth Harbor when it sank. The wreckage was found in 1971 by a team of divers, and over the next ten years, it was excavated.
In 1982, it was brought to the surface. They discovered more than twenty-eight thousand artifacts, including weapons, tools, cannons, and armor. They also discovered human remains, which indicated that many had experienced childhood malnutrition. Many crew members showed signs of arthritis and bone fractures.
The USS Hornet was a World War II aircraft carrier that sank in a 1942 battle with the Japanese Navy. The ship was discovered deep in the South Pacific Ocean, sitting upright and nearly intact. There are little signs of deterioration or buildup from ocean life, and also visible are the anti-aircraft weapons used to fend off the intense bombardment from Japanese aircraft.
The bombs dropped by the Japanese planes forced the crew of more than two thousand to abandon the ship. One hundred eleven sailors from the ship's crew lost their lives in the battle.