Oarfish - The World's Longest Fish
Oarfish are the longest of all fish with at least one reported to be 56 ft (17 m). Most are closer to about 30 ft (9 m). It is thought that some of the old sailors’ tales of sea serpents or mythical sea monsters stem from sightings of the oarfish. They are rarely seen since they usually live at profound depths in the ocean at 660 ft (200 m) but occasionally they will wash up on the sea shore or are force up to the surface after violent storms. Their appearance after violent storms probably didn’t help their reputations.
In more recent times they have been spotted near the surface in the clear Caribbean waters. Oarfish are captivating fish with long, slim, usually shiny silver bodies, with bright crimson fins, often with a large red plume on the head, and other long fins. The tail fin is not very long but has long rays covered in spines. Another interesting trait is that they hold themselves straight up and down in the water. They are not known to be of any commercial value, and the meat is reported to be inedible.
Photo search for "oarfish" on Flickr.com:
Click on thumbnails to see picture details on Flickr