Mysteries

Atlantis, monsters and killer waves: mysteries of the deep sea

What monsters live where the usual pressure for our fragile bodies is exceeded a thousand times? And how does the abyss avenge the invasion of its limits?

Most of our planet is covered with water. It seems logical that the house of humanity should not be called “Earth”, but “Water”. For a long time, people have wondered what is hidden in the sea abyss. Humanity drew the answer to it in legends, and with the development of technology – in summaries of scientific research. 

The primitive fear of the abyss has not gone anywhere. The deepest point on the planet – about 11 kilometers – is the Mariana Trench. What monsters live where the usual pressure for us is exceeded by a thousand times? And how does the abyss avenge the invasion of its limits?

Vestibular apparatus and decompression sickness

To understand how the abyss works, you need to study the human vestibular apparatus. Our brain contains a hollow section the size of a nut. Its walls are lined with sensitive tissue, at the bottom of such a “ball” there is a liquid, and crystals are located in the liquid. 

They irritate the lower part of the vestibular apparatus. When diving into the abyss, anyone’s vestibular apparatus goes crazy, since in water the force of gravity affects a person in a peculiar way. A few turns – and we no longer understand where is the top and where is the bottom. The need for long work under water pushed technical progress towards new inventions. This is how scuba gear appeared. 

Our main enemy at depth is also determined by the structure of our bodies- decompression sickness, or boiling of blood due to nitrogen accumulated in the cells.

There is a rule that you exhale and should not overtake the bubbles going up. If we break this rule, nitrogen starts to be released in the blood, the blood boils, which destroys the blood vessels. The faster we surface, the higher the likelihood of serious consequences. The person is in danger of death or paralysis.

Monsters of the Depth

All peoples have their own legends about creatures living in the ocean depths. From the Bible we know about Leviathan, from mythical stories – about Poseidon and the sirens. Later, tales of sea snakes and dragons appeared. Mermaids are mentioned in various folklore legends. Previously, all troubles were attributed to the unknown, but now the submariners have quite reliable information about the inhabitants of the abyss.

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There is always a threat. You cannot touch sea animals, because this is their home. They can bite us. There are also poisonous animals under water.

And if a person is frightened by a shark due to its eerie appearance, then it is better to warn about the danger of beautiful mollusks-cones in advance. The bite of some species is fatal. 

Going deeper, you can meet especially sophisticated hunters – for example, anglers or monkfish. These creatures are distinguished by impressive teeth, as well as growths throughout the body. Above the heads of the females there is a special rod with bioluminescent bacteria. They attract fish to nutritious organisms. 

No less frightening is the black live-throat, capable of swallowing prey larger than itself. Fortunately, the length of these creatures does not exceed 25 centimeters.

Customs against disasters

It is natural for a person to be afraid of heights and depths – the lack of support under their feet. Our ancestors not only respected the abyss, but made sacrifices to it. Similar traditions still exist today. 

One of the most urgent is to smash a bottle of fizzy alcohol on the side of a new ship. Suffice it to recall the terrible crashes of ships, during the descent of which the bottle did not break. This also happened with the nuclear submarine K-19, which sank in 1961. 

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Previously, the ritual of consecrating ships had a religious character. Its goal was to earn the grace of the gods. The custom of hitting a vessel with wine on the stem was established at the end of the 7th century, and champagne flowed along the sides after the “intervention” of the French.

Secrets of Atlantis

Photo: © Pixabay

Many explorers were looking for Atlantis, but the ancient mythical continent continues to keep its secrets. Curious are the new findings concerning the unknown land. In ancient Greek books, for example, they found references to the war with the Atlanteans. And surprisingly, a more powerful civilization was defeated. 

Perhaps it was the warlike Greeks that caused the minimum information about Atlantis to come down to us. As the ancients wrote, at a certain period Atlantis was able to subjugate vast territories of the Mediterranean. 

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Its inhabitants exploited deposits of mysterious minerals, allegedly used in alloys with metals. But once a developed civilization simply went under water. Perhaps seismically unstable Japan will soon follow this example.

Sunken ships and mobile biomass

Over the centuries, about three million ships have been at the bottom of the sea, and most of them with valuable cargo. There are even special maps of sunken ships. Finding them on the Internet is not difficult. It is much more difficult to dive so deep to be guaranteed something to profit from.

Photo: © Pixabay

Scientists discovered another mystery in 1942. With the help of an echo sounder – a device that determines the distance to the bottom – at a depth of 500-600 meters, they recorded a layer of earth. 

Experts took it for a sunken island until, over the course of the day, the layer began to move deeper, and then rise to the surface. Versions of a huge submarine or an underwater UFO immediately flew around the world. It was only later revealed that it was a shoal of vertically migrating biomass – glowing anchovies reflecting equipment signals.

Bermuda Triangle and killer waves

The mysteries of the Bermuda Triangle still make even experienced pilots and captains tremble. Many legends are told about the ships and planes missing here.

There are many myths about the Bermuda Triangle, perhaps due to peculiar atmospheric phenomena.

Photo: © Pixabay

Many stories about the Bermuda Triangle are just hypotheses or tales. But sailors know the danger in person. It is almost impossible to predict its appearance. These are killer waves up to 40 meters high and even higher. The number of survivors after meeting them tends to be zero. 

In 1995, it was found that giant waves are caused by underwater earthquakes and underwater volcanic eruptions. The deep sea hides many dangers and the more often people think about them, the safer our lives will become.

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