Giant isopods, or Bathynomus giganteus, may look like overgrown cockroaches or bugs, but they’re a creature of the crustacean family. Belongs to the order Isopoda, which includes more than 10,000 species and 4,500 of which are found in marine environments. However, only 20 species are known in the genus Bathynomus to date.
Unlike their small terrestrial cousins, these exotic marine animals often reach a length of 19 to nearly 40 centimeters. Some of the larger species are classified as “super-giant” arthropods and can grow to a body size of up to 20 inches (more than 50 centimeters).
Scientists theorize that their enormous size is an adaptation to the extreme temperatures of their deep-sea habitats, but they don’t know for sure why they get to be so large. .
One of the largest giant isopods on record is a 2.5-foot (nearly 80 centimeters) giant discovered in 2010. The creature was accidentally brought to the surface after it came to the surface. it attaches itself to a remotely operated underwater vehicle (ROV) at a depth of 8,500 feet (2.6 km) under the sea.
Giant arthropod with 14 insect-like legs on its body with two large reflective eyes. Even more terrifying is that their mouth has four sets of jaws, and can easily swallow hard shells and animal carcasses found on the ocean floor.
Like most deep-sea animals, the giant cephalopods are not aggressive. Their slow metabolism allows them to be in a semi-hibernating state, so they rarely need to feed. Some giant isopods in captivity can live up to 5 years without food.