There are 18 different species of octopus within the genus Grimpoteuthis which are commonly referred to as a “Dumbo octopuses” due to their characteristic ear-like fins that make them resemble Disney’s Dumbo. These enigmatic cephalopods are a pretty rare sight since they usually dwell in deep waters ranging from 400 meters to 4,800 meters, but the few times they have been spotted has revealed that they usually eat crustaceans and worms. They’ve also been observed around deep sea hydrothermal vents, which are areas on the sea floor where hot and mineral rich fluids spew out due to volcanic activity.
This video, conducted mostly in American Sign Language, finds a man claiming that he keeps his great grandmother's casket in his backyard. Apparently, the original cemetery "cannot upkeep because of corruption," so he transferred his grandmother's body to an above-ground lot. Not only is this very illegal (do not keep dead bodies, y'all), the next video clip involves the man opening the casket and kissing the corpse of his grandmother on the mouth. ON. THE. MOUTH.
You might be surprised to learn that this beautiful sea critter (also known as a sea swallow or blue dragon) is actually a sea slug. The blue and silvery mollusk is known to feed off cnidarians like the venomous Portuguese Man o' War. What makes these gorgeous slugs even more fascinating is their practice of storing the cnidarians's stinging nematocysts within its own tissues — ensuring a painful sting to anyone who messes with it.
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!

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.


In January 2013, a Canadian student at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver was reported missing, having last been seen at the Cecil Hotel in Los Angeles. After Elisa Lam had been missing for a week and a half, LA police released this video of her last known appearance. Three weeks later, Lam's body was discovered naked and drowned in the building's water tower, and her death was labeled an accident. Her mystery reportedly inspired Ryan Murphy to make American Horror Story: Hotel.
Sometimes referred to as vampire sharks, these creatures don’t like being exposed to sunlight. They aren’t often seen and so some people believe they are very low in numbers. Because of its distorted and disfigured appearance, some people assume this is some type of species that has been born with genetic concerns or that has been mangled by another creature living in the water. Given the depths at which it lives, the goblin shark poses no danger to humans but it might as well be on the endangered list due to few sightings of the shark.

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!
“This is a maned wolf from the Piaui State of northeastern Brazil. It is the tallest wild canid in the world standing over 4 feet at the shoulder. Due to its red fur and fox-like face and ears, it is often called a fox on stilts. This particular wolf came sniffing around our camp the previous two nights but I was hoping to photograph it in existing light without flash. Maned wolves are mostly nocturnal but will forage in the morning and late afternoon and finally on the third night it came by early enough that I was able to get a bunch of shots before dusk.” – Sean Crane
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