Despite its reddish hue and cape-like webbing that may call Count Dracula to mind, Vampyroteuthis infernalis is harmless. This deep-dwelling species — typically living in 2,000 to 4,000 feet of water — can flip its webbing inside out as a form of protection, revealing rows of soft tooth-like spines called cirri. This scaredy-cat is a far cry from all other cephalopods, which hunt live animals.
These wonderfully strange creatures only seem alien to us because they are so different from us. Nothing showcases the biodiversity of our planet better than a look at species we find bizarre or unusual. All of these critters have found totally different niches in nature than we have. Sadly, species are being lost rapidly every single year, and the biodiversity of our planet is shrinking as a result of our human influence. If we want amazing species like the sea pig and the spider crab to continue to thrive, we need to work actively to preserve and protect the natural environment.
In this news video, a child appears to be haunted by a duppy, a malevolent spirit of Caribbean origin. While the boy in the video claims the duppy is the spirit of a friend, it behaves violently toward him, pushing and pulling him in different directions. Some people have written off the video as a fake, but watching the boy's movements carefully, especially in the second attack, shows him flailing and kicking in ways that don't look like acting. Without follow-up, we don't know whether the spirit ever left him alone or if he continued to be haunted - we're left only with the lasting image of a young boy tormented by a violent duppy.
User the15experience uploaded with the simple description: "This video was sent to me anonymously. I do not have any information beyond that. It is for you to decide on your own whether it is real or fake." The video was so shocking when it was uploaded that it launched an online search for this woman, which eventually uncovered the truth. It turned out that the original teaser had been clipped to remove the "15 Experience" URL at the end and made it to Facebook as a "real" paranormal video. Don't worry, "Nikki" is fine.
Now, the obvious answer here is that the girl is on a wire. There's even a convenient gap in the filming -- as the guy is moving in closer, the camera is pointed at the ground for a second or two, and when it snaps back up, the little girl is already back on the ground. We don't ever actually see her descend, which if wires were involved would be a dead giveaway. You'd see her tilting awkwardly or her clothes pulling up at odd angles wherever the wires were attached, even if she were wearing a harness. So clearly, she's being held aloft by wires that are connected somewhere in the trees ...
Speaking of ghosts and tourist attractions, another haunted "spirit" of a woman was spotted in an Acadian Village cabin in Louisiana earlier this year. We're not really sure what the back story is on this one, but we do know that the attraction is dedicated to Cajun history in the 1800s. So, based on that, we're guessing the "ghost" might've been a basket weaver or corn shucker back in the day.
Also known as "thumb splitters," these vibrant crustaceans are named in honor of their powerful claws, which can spear, stun and dismember prey with 200 pounds of force. In addition to their predatory tendencies, mantis shrimp are also distinguished for their impressive visual capabilities. The eyes of these psychedelic sea critters are equipped with 12 color receptors — meanwhile, humans and most other animals only have three. Scientists speculate this might enable them to process color information quickly within the eye instead going through the brain.
This two-man British crew is about all things real and true, as they spend their time revealing ghosts caught on tape and exploring real ghost stories. They focus their work on just about every possible entity from the afterlife, including ghosts, demons and poltergeists while visiting haunted UK locations, including abandoned churches and graveyards.
Chances are when you first see this film it doesn’t play as an ad for EDM, and it ended up providing inspiration for some of the 2000s most disturbing horror. The “Big Brain” character in the rebooted The Hills Have Eyes looks a lot like Rubber Johnny and in January 2006, the Showtime anthology series Masters of Horror aired and episode called the “Fair-Haired Child” about a young girl who was kidnapped and kept in a basement with a scarily deformed child... named Johnny.
This bizarre looking animal (Atretochoana eiselti), which shockingly is neither a penis nor a snake, was only known from two preserved specimens until it was rediscovered in 2011 while part of the Madeira River in South America was being drained. It’s a caecilian amphibian that can achieve a total length of around 80 centimeters, making it the biggest known caecilian. Little is known about these hilarious looking animals, but caecilians are limbless and generally navigate via their sense of smell.
So what is it? It's clearly a person (or the shade of a person) just kind of jaunting along like a haunted iPod commercial, but what could produce that image on the security feed? A lot of YouTube comments jump to the conclusion that it's a reflection on the monitor, which would make sense if the room the monitors are in were about 60 feet long, and wide enough for someone to stand far enough away to make the appropriate scale and to walk a long enough distance to cast a seamless reflection on all four screens. Beyond that, the screens are stacked, not side by side, meaning the security office would have to be two stories tall and the person casting the reflection would have to teleport from the top level to the bottom level midstride in order to maintain the illusion. Either that or the reflection is being made by a very tiny man.
Giant isopods live between 550 to 7020 feet deep, and prefer a mud or clay floor, which they burrow into for shelter. The most scary feauture about them, apart from their bug like appearance, is that they can get really BIG! Their size ranges between 7.5 and 14.2 inches in length, but they can get much bigger: One specimen pulled up with an ROV in 2010 was 2.5 feet long! They also can survive very long without eating. In fact, one giant isopod in Japan went for five years without eating a single bite before dying earlier this year. They are known to bite! But its a small one, harmless. Believe it or not THERE’S A WHOLE ALBUM DEDICATED TO SONGS ABOUT THEM. It’s called Songs About Giant Isopods, and you can listen to it here.
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The Star Nosed Mole must have jumped straight out of a Bugs Bunny cartoon. It looks as if its head just got blown up, an effect made even more realistic by the pink tentacles stretched out on its nose. This weird creature is found in Canada and in the north-eastern part of the US. The name comes from its strange nose (which is more like a squished octopus attached to its face than a nose). The tentacles on the nose help the mole find snails, molluscs, worms, and other small creatures it likes to eat. They probably see it coming and die laughing, allowing the mole to simply walk up and gobble them up.
What looks like a zombie shark is actually the Atlantic Wolffish. It is a deep sea fish. hence its appearance. It has very large teeth that stick out of its mouth, even when closed, giving it a ferocious appearance. Despite this look, Atlantic Wolffish are not aggressive towards people and are not known to bite people unless they are provoked. Atlantic Wolffish are voracious predators, and the large head, powerful jaws, and large canine teeth are all used to hunt and eat hard-bodied or spiny invertebrates. Their blood contains several natural compounds that prevent it from freezing.
If you freeze-frame it, you can see that while the thing may be humanoid in appearance, its eyes are badly sunken in, its head and face seem overly large (and awfully pale), and its pupils catch every ounce of the virtually nonexistent light coming from the camera. So, it's either a seriously haggard meth addict with Riddick-like powers who wandered out into the woods of Spain to scream at the talking scorpions living beneath his fingernails, or it's someone in heavy monster makeup. Most likely, it's the latter and the whole thing was staged by a couple of friends wanting to either get on the news or become Internet famous. It's not even that great of a costu- ... wait, what are those, stumps on its back?
It would (presumably) have to be CGI that was doctored directly onto the security tapes and then filmed on a separate camcorder during playback. Maybe the guard stole four separate tapes of footage, took them home to add the effects on each one and then brought them back to the park to play them on the security bank in perfect sync without anybody noticing. After all, it's not Air Force One, it's Disneyland. How hardcore could security possibly get? Well, they do have four cameras monitoring a single walkway ...
In this video, we have four kids wandering around looking for a ghost in an abandoned school in Iraq (one description says India, but since they're speaking Arabic we'll go with Iraq). The boys are kind of wandering aimlessly through stairwells and empty classrooms for a solid two minutes, which would arouse suspicion under our "Why is anyone filming this?" rule if not for the fact that we know they are explicitly waiting for the lights to suddenly dim and for a hallway full of disembodied 19th century clothes to start doing the Monster Mash. That doesn't happen. What happens is much creepier:
Which one of these bizarre creatures and critters are you meeting for the first time? Discover animal kingdom oddballs that 500px photographers have captured for you, with jaw-dropping features that range from wide cartoon-ish eyes to extremely long limbs and snouts to exaggerated body parts that look downright scary. Plus, you’ll get the story behind each of these photographers’ wild encounters. Scroll down!
Known for the peculiar frill around its neck, this lizard is largely arboreal, spending majority of its time in the trees. When the lizard is frightened, it produces a startling deimatic display: it gapes its mouth, exposing a bright pink or yellow lining; it spreads out its frill, displaying bright orange and red scales; raises its body; and sometimes holds its tail above its body. This reaction is used for territorial displays, to discourage predators, and during courtship.
Pet owners know the eerie feeling of seeing your cat or dog watch something you can't see, and this dog owner put their pet's extra senses to the test. Captured in 2008, the footage starts off with radio interference and an orb, but gets substantially weirder. A door opens and shuts on its own, a roll of paper towels goes flying, and the dogs bark and retreat from something behind where the camera is sitting. It's a freaky scene, one that's not easily explained by camera tricks.
First up on the list is the aptly named Blobfish. The best way I can describe this thing is by asking you to remember those old Wild West movies. Remember how everyone was always spitting their chewing tobacco into those metal bins? Well, imagine you looked into the bin after a couple of hours. What you’re looking at is basically a massive slimy blob of phlegm and snot. Throw in a two googly-eyes and use some lipstick to draw a mouth like the Joker’s. That is essentially your Blobfish.
While innocently minding her own business and posing for a vacation picture at a Japanese burial ground, this little Canadian girl appears to have awoken what some think is the spirit of a dismembered Samurai warrior. The dad who took the photo, which was then posted to reddit by his friend, claims that no one else was around he snapped the photo—or, so he thought...
The two men are apparently investigating strange noises. It's not totally unbelievable that they would want to bring a camera along -- strange noises potentially mean a large and equally strange creature, so it would behoove them to get it on tape. As they follow the noises, they start to find giant white feathers, which honestly are kind of out of place in the middle of the forest, seeing as oversized swans and/or geese typically don't go tearing through the underbrush at midnight:
If an anteater and an armadillo had a baby, it might look something like the pangolin, an odd-looking mammal found throughout parts of Asia and Africa. The pangolin has a long, specially adapted tongue for eating ants and termites and wears a protective keratin shell — it is the only mammal known to have this adaptation. Sadly, its unique characteristics also make it the most trafficked mammal in the world, as it is highly sought-after for its meat and armor. The pangolin is currently listed as a threatened species.
The Mutillidae are a family of more than 3,000 species of wasps (despite the names) whose wingless females resemble large, hairy ants. Found in Chile, they are known for their extremely painful stings, hence the common name cow killer or cow ant. Black and white specimens are sometimes known as panda ants due to their hair coloration resembling that of the Chinese giant panda. (Image credits: Chris Lukhaup)
One of the classic, creepy videos of the pre-YouTube internet made it to the mass streaming service in 2006. Rather than being downloaded and shared as a movie file as it originally gained cult status, the video was uploaded by the director of the short film, who already knew it had become a curio of the web. The director, David B. Earle, wanted to make an infinitely looping film to show the paradox that there might be nothing on the other side of life.
Like its namesake legend, the Abominable Snowman, the yeti crab has limbs that are covered in thick white hairs. These hairs are also covered in filamentous bacteria that give the crab an extraordinarily hairy appearance. In 2011, another species of yeti crab was discovered, and the role of these hairs became clearer. It appears that the crabs use their hairs as farmland for the filamentous bacteria that grow on them. They harvest and feed on these bacteria, and even wave their hairy arms in nutrient-rich vent seeps to fertilize their crop and increase their productivity.
These creatures possess one of the most bizarre noses in the entire animal kingdom. The snouts are lined with more than 25,000 minute sensory receptors that help the mole feel its way through its underground lair. These 11 pairs of pink fleshy appendages ringing its snout is used as a touch organ and are perfectly poised to detect seismic wave vibrations.