8. The Hoff Crab
The Hoff crab, a hairy creature that lives on the seafloor, gets its moniker from resembling David Hasselhoff’s hairy chest. It is easy to wonder what Hasselhoff (the “Hoff”) thought about that. Supposedly, he was quite honored that a creature was nicknamed after his hairy chest. Later, the crab was given the scientific name of Kiwa tyleri.
The animal was found on East Scotia Ridge in the Southern Ocean, where the waters are about 0 degrees Celsius (32 °F). That is too cold for the crab to handle, so it huddles around so-called hydrothermal vents on the ocean floor. The volcanic rock systems heat up the area.
The Hoff crab has a hairy appearance because the animal is covered in bacteria. The crab uses its comblike mouthparts to scrape off the bacteria and eat them for dinner (or breakfast or lunch).
7. The Sea Spider
If you are an arachnophobe, you may want to skip this part because one of the creatures living in the frigid Antarctic waters is the giant sea spider, which would be probably your worst nightmare. Then again, they aren’t really spiders. Despite their name and appearance, they’re marine arthropods.
These creatures can be as large as 35 centimeters (14 in) in diameter. Although it is unknown why giant sea spiders are so large, the phenomenon is called “polar gigantism.” In polar environments, many species have evolved to be much larger than their counterparts in temperate climates.
According to one theory, these sea spiders are gigantic because the frigid temperatures in their environment have slowed down their metabolisms so much that they need little oxygen to survive. Due to an oversupply of oxygen in the area, scientists believe that the sea spiders evolved larger body sizes over time.
Giant sea spiders can also be found in Arctic waters.