Casting the Net

In the depths of California’s Monterey Bay are swimming aliens. But aren’t they fun?

Few of us get to see what’s below the surface at Monterey Bay. Sure, you can take a dolphin tour. But, for a peek at the truly oddball landscape and creatures, Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute is the answer. Some of the institute’s recorded footage and photographs are at Sanctuary Exploration Center in Santa Cruz. Others you can see on MBARI’s YouTube channel, like the stranger-than-fiction anglerfish. It’s rare, lurks at depths of 1,900 feet, and has a built-in “light” protruding from its head. The sea is a wonder worth exploring, especially in one of the deepest underwater canyons in the continental U.S.

In November 2014, MBARI researchers using the remotely operated vehicle Doc Ricketts observed this amazing deep-sea anglerfish in the genus Melanocetus about 580 meters (1,900 feet) below the surface of Monterey Bay. Credit: In November 2014,(c) 2014 MBARI
In November 2014, MBARI researchers using the remotely operated vehicle Doc Ricketts observed this amazing deep-sea anglerfish in the genus Melanocetus about 580 meters (1,900 feet) below the surface of Monterey Bay. Credit: In November 2014,(c) 2014 MBARI
Credit: Kim Fulton-Bennett (c) 2006: MBARI's research facilities in Moss Landing, California.
Credit: Kim Fulton-Bennett (c) 2006: MBARI’s research facilities in Moss Landing, California.

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