‘Bizarre’ creatures found in Indian Ocean
   Date :24-Nov-2022

PANCAKE sea urchins, eels with no eyes, and bat-like fish are among some “stunning” creatures found living in the depths of the Indian Ocean, scientists say.
The expedition led by a team at Museums Victoria Research Institute mapped the seafloor in Australia’s Cocos (Keeling) Islands Marine Park in detail for the first time, a statement by the institute said.
They revealed massive flat-topped ancient sea-mountains, flanked by volcanic cones, snarly ridges, and canyons formed from avalanches of sand that have slumped down onto the abyssal ocean floor.
The research vessel (RV) Investigator, operated by CSIRO, Australia’s national science agency, also surveyed previously unknown deep-sea life in the Indian Ocean Territories.
The underwater video from the expedition has revealed diverse fish life hovering over the summits of the seamounts, samples of which have been collected from as deep as five kilometres below the surface. Some of the most fascinating
finds are: a previously unknown blind eel covered in loose, transparent, gelatinous skin. Their eyes are poorly developed and, unusually for a fish, females give birth to live young, the researchers said. Another interesting creature found is a deep-sea batfish that ambles over the seafloor on their arm-like fins. They have a tiny “fishing lure” in a small hollow on their snout to attract prey, the team said.
The Tribute Spiderfish was also found, with incredibly long lower fins with thickened tips, which allow it to prop high up off the bottom as if it was on stilts, giving it the perfect height to feed on small prawns that drift by in the current.