List of Biggest Fish in the Sea
Well to be fair, not only fish but rather the largest marine creatures in the ocean. We've already looked at some of the rarest fish in the world, the strangest fish in the world and the most dangerous fish in the world, but what about size? In this article we will take a look at the biggest sea creatures in the ocean, naturally to avoid having a list filled up with 10 species of whales we'll be taking a look at the biggest fish or marine creature under their specific class.
Sunfish (Mola mola)
The Mola mola is the biggest bony fish in our ocean waters, weighing in at up to a ton, or in rare cases in excess of that! There have been recorded cases of the sunfish having a weight in excess of 2000 kg and a length of 3 meters. The sunfish is one of the few large marine creatures which have a height that is longer than its length, typically the sunfish has a length of around 2 meters and a height of around 3 meters. They are typically found in warm tropical waters, most commonly between the Pacific and Atlantic. They spend lots of their time at depths of 200 meters and more, though they are often seen basking in shallow waters in a horizontal position. Some suggest that this basking position is done in order to receive warmth from the sun. There is still a lot that is unknown about the mola mola and the lifespan of sunfish in nature is yet to be found, though aquarium raised sunfish tend to live for around 10 years.
European Conger Eel
The largest of the eels, the European Conger can grow to lengths that exceed 4 meters and weigh over 60 kilograms! It may not be the most beautiful specimen by general aesthetic standards but the conger eel is many a scuba divers good friend, assuming that they keep their hands to themselves. They live at depths ranging from just a few meters near the shores, to depths over 1000 meters. They are most commonly found along the eastern coastal areas of Europe, more specifically in Norway and Iceland - though they have been known to exist in the Black Sea as well. At a normal 3 meters in length, it makes the European Conger Eel even longer than the average mola mola.
Probably the most expected marine animal on the list, the blue whale is believed to possibly be the largest animal to ever exist. While some mistakenly label the blue whale as a fish, most are aware that whales are in fact mammals, though don't let that take away from the fact that this large sea creature is as big as they get! The blue whale can grow to lengths in excess of 30 meters and weigh in at an astonishing one-hundred-and-eighty metric tons.
The blue whale had a strong global presence in the 19th century, though due to whaling this number declined drastically over the decades, and in the 1960s the population reached its lowest levels with under 1000 estimated blue whales in the world. Since then there has been a slight increase with the population estimated to be near 10,000 in recent years, though the blue whale remains an endangered species.
While their numbers remain low, they can be found in most of the oceans of the world, concentrations of the blue whale can be found in the Antarctic, Indian Ocean, North East Pacific as well as a couple of others.
|Photo by PetarM|
Beluga (European Sturgeon)
The Beluga, also known as the European Sturgeon, is an extremely large species of anadromous fish which can be found in the Adriatic, Caspian and the Black Sea. The female Beluga typically grows 20% larger than the males and can grow to lengths in excess of 4 meters and weigh in at up to 500 kg in some cases. The largest Beluga on record was caught in 1827 and weighed in at nearly 1,500kg with a length in excess of 7 meters. The Beluga is an extremely slow growing, but long living fish which can live for longer than 100 years. Unfortunately due to overfishing and the desire to obtain Beluga caviar which fetches high prices, the Beluga is a critically endangered species.
With a total width in excess of 7 meters and a weight of over 2 tons, the Manta Ray is the largest of the ray species and also one of the biggest creatures in the ocean. The Manta ray is one of the few large marine species which is not endangered or even threatened. They remain common place in many of the oceans and are commonly sought after by scuba divers for the experience they provide with their graceful movements and awe inspiring presence, and remain calm and gentle giants of the ocean.
The Whale Shark is one of the biggest fish in the ocean and can grow up to a length of around 10 meters and weigh in at over 25 tons! Despite the word 'whale' in the name, the Whale Shark is a species of shark, and not a type of whale. The reason why it was named a Whale Shark was due to both the fact that it was extremely large and that it was a filter feeder. It is a migratory fish which can be found at depths in excess of 500 meters, though is also often seen in extremely shallow waters and even near the mouths of rovers and near lagoons.
They can be found in warm tropical and sub-tropical waters around the world. One of the most amazing and yet under-rated areas to dive with Whale Sharks is off the coast of the Southern African country of Mozambique. Near Tofo, Mozambique you are able to both scuba dive and even snorkel alongside these majestic creatures. Due to the fact that the Whale Shark is a filter feeder and not a predatory shark, they are extremely safe to swim with, making them a targeted dive buddy for many scuba divers.
Japanese Spider Crab
The Japanese Spider Crab is an extremely large species of marine crab which can be found in the waters around Japan, more specifically around the island of Honshu. It is well known for its gigantic size which trump the other species. It has a leg span over nearly 4 meters in some cases and can weigh in at nearly 20 kg. They have quite a range when it comes to depths and can be found in waters no more than 50 meters, but are also found as deep as 600 meters. They have extremely long life spans and can live up to 100 years. While reports say that the Japanese Spider Crab remains a docile creature, I know I wouldn't want to be anywhere near that thing!
|Photo by Paul N Robinson|
The Colossal Squid is more often associated with maritime horror stories. But the Colossal Squid sure does exist, and while in reality being smaller than the boat sinking monster portrayed in the movies, the Colossal squid can reach lengths in excess of 14 meters and is the largest living squid species. They remain localized to the extreme southern hemisphere along Antarctica. They are suspected to play a large role in the diet of Sperm Whales with numerous cases where Colossal Squid remains were found inside of whales. Physically the Colossal Squid is quite intimidating with its large size and the fact that each one of the squids limbs are equipped with sharp hooks. The Colossal Squid remains one of the biggest sea creatures.
Obviously not all of the large marine life that exists is listed above, but if you feel as though we may have missed a crucial big fish, be sure to leave a comment for a possible second instalment