Do you fancy living and swimming around nearly five miles (or 7,700 metres) beneath the surface?
Well fish called snail fish (from the family Liparidae) are found exclusively below 6000 metres, where they contend with total darkness, near freezing temperatures and immense water pressure – equivalent to 1600 elephants on the roof of a Mini. They feed on the thousands of tiny shrimp-like creatures that scavenge the carcasses of dead fish on the ocean floor.
Snail fish live only in a handful of trenches in the Pacific Ocean: the Kermadec and Tonga trenches situated between Samoa and New Zealand in the South Pacific, and the Japan trench, which Priede’s team is currently investigating.
The fish were found by researchers supported by the Natural Environment Research Council.