Teen's Deep-Sea Discovery Stuns Scientists - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Teen's Deep-Sea Discovery Stuns Scientists

Posted: Updated:

YAHOO.COM - Kirill Dudko, a 14-year-old from Ukraine, has provided scientists in Canada with remarkable footage from their own remote deep-sea cameras: the first-known photo documentation of an elephant seal slurping a hagfish from the sea floor--at an astonishing depth of 2,933 feet. (Watch the mammal grab the hagfish in the first clip, and see scientist Steven Mihaly explain Dudko's discovery in the second.)

Dudko, who is obsessed with deep-sea biology, spends lots of time monitoring video feeds from sea-floor cameras and collecting clips for his YouTube channel. He singled out the elephant seal clip after spotting the quick event, which occurred in Barkley Canyon off Canada's Pacific coast.

The boy, who could not identify the critter because only part of its face is visible in the footage, wrote to Neptune Canada, stating: "Suddenly, a huge creature grabbed the hagfish. You know, it was like a horror film! This creature wasn't a fish, and I realized it was a mammal because of its nose and mustache."

Scientists identified the mammal as an elephant seal, a species that has been recorded diving to depths of nearly 5,000 feet. Elephant seals can remain underwater for up to two hours.

Hagfish are slender, eel-like critters that favor soft-mud habitat. They're blind foragers that rely heavily on olfactory senses and feed chiefly on fish and worm-like creatures. Because they produce considerable amounts of slime, they're also called slime eels.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • PHOTOS JUST IN: Devastation from Carlton Complex; 300 homes burned

    PHOTOS JUST IN: Devastation from Carlton Complex; 300 homes burned

    Saturday, July 26 2014 12:07 AM EDT2014-07-26 04:07:59 GMT
    TWISP, Wash. (AP) - The Okanogan County Sheriff says the Carlton Complex wildfire has many more homes than previously thought. Sheriff Frank Rogers said Friday that the Carlton Complex fire has consumed about 300 homes this month. His office previously placed the number at 150, but he said then he knew it would rise.>>
    TWISP, Wash. (AP) - The Okanogan County Sheriff says the Carlton Complex wildfire has many more homes than previously thought. Sheriff Frank Rogers said Friday that the Carlton Complex fire has consumed about 300 homes this month. His office previously placed the number at 150, but he said then he knew it would rise.>>
  • 44 Riverside homes destroyed or damaged in storm

    44 Riverside homes destroyed or damaged in storm

    Thursday, July 24 2014 3:46 PM EDT2014-07-24 19:46:53 GMT
    RIVERSIDE, Wash. - Many families were still at the Red Cross Shelter set up at Riverside High School in Riverside this morning.An afternoon storm destroyed or damaged 44 of their homes and knocked down close to 100 trees in Riverside Village Mobile Home Park.Many residents said the storm looked like a tornado as it swept through their neighborhood.>>
    RIVERSIDE, Wash. - Many families were still at the Red Cross Shelter set up at Riverside High School in Riverside this morning.An afternoon storm destroyed or damaged 44 of their homes and knocked down close to 100 trees in Riverside Village Mobile Home Park.Many residents said the storm looked like a tornado as it swept through their neighborhood.>>
  • VIRAL VIDEO: Dog passes out from overwhelming joy at owners return

    VIRAL VIDEO: Dog passes out from overwhelming joy at owners return

    Monday, July 28 2014 11:26 AM EDT2014-07-28 15:26:12 GMT
    KHQ.COM - A woman who left her dog in the care of friends while she moved away for two years, got an unexpected and heart melting reaction from her little schnauzer, Casey, when she returned. This video has gone viral since it was posted July 24th with over 17 million views as of July 28th.>>
    KHQ.COM - A woman who left her dog in the care of friends while she moved away for two years, got an unexpected and heart melting reaction from her little schnauzer, Casey, when she returned. This video has gone viral since it was posted July 24th with over 17 million views as of July 28th.>>