Deep Sea Fish Facts & Worksheets

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In the depths of the sea, an ecology has adapted to survive in the absence of light and warmth. Fish that live in the deep waters beneath the sunlight are known as deep-sea fish. These fish are able to live for days without food and with minimal oxygen.

See the fact file below for more information on Deep Sea Fish, or you can download our 28-page Deep Sea Fish worksheet pack to utilize within the classroom or home environment.

Key Facts & Information


  • Deep sea fish develop their own light, called bioluminescence, to help them navigate through darkness. They also use this light as bait to attract prey.
  • The food source for deep sea fish is surface water debris, often referred to as marine snow. Fecal matter and organisms that are in the process of degrading are among the many components that make it up.
  • The Lanternfish is, by far, the most common deep-sea fish. They are slightly elongated with multiple luminous organs on the head, underbelly, and base of the tail.


  • The deep ocean covers 60% of the body of water and descends as far as 11,000 meters. Since the water is so deep, sunlight cannot penetrate it, making it extremely cold and almost unlivable.
  • The amount of pressure in the deep ocean would make it unsafe for people or any other living thing to swim around. The pressure on the ocean floor is astoundingly 380 times more than it is at the surface at the typical ocean depth (3,800 meters). It’s 1,100 times greater in the deepest trenches!
  • In order to explore the deep ocean, scientists employ specialized submarines that protect them from pressure and the cold. Later on, robots were utilized to examine these rarely explored areas.
  • The extreme pressure, freezing temperatures, and never-ending darkness of this environment make it seem uninhabitable. However, numerous years of living thousands of feet below the surface, deep sea fish found in the deep ocean have adapted to thrive in a hostile setting.
  • Edward Forbes first put up the Azoic hypothesis in the 1840s, which claimed that because of the ocean’s pressurized conditions and low temperatures, life would be impossibly unusual at extreme depths. Forbes was certain that nothing could survive below 600 meters since there was no light. This has now been shown to be incorrect.


  • Deep-sea fish have developed some fascinating feeding strategies due to the scarcity of food and absence of photosynthesis in these regions.
  • Marine Snow is organic material that contains dead algae, plants, and animals that are falling downward into the ocean’s depths and serves as food for deep-sea fish.
  • Large animal remains that settle to the bottom of the sea, like those of whales, provide occasional but vast feasts for deep-sea creatures, which are consumed by a wide range of animals.
  • Many deepwater fish don’t waste much energy swimming around looking for food; instead, they stay put and ambush their prey with the help of clever adaptations.
  • The unique physical traits of deepwater fish are not without explanation. The extraordinarily long, inward-pointing fang-like teeth of many deep-sea fish ensure that any prey caught has little chance of escaping.
  • Some deep-sea animals travel to the surface waters at dusk to feed during the night when it is dark. They return to the depths around dawn to digest, probably to escape being eaten throughout the day.


  • Little food, high water pressure, low oxygen levels, darkness, and extremely cold temperatures are just a few of the challenges deep sea fish must overcome to survive.
  • Bioluminescence is a lightning technique perfected by a variety of deep water fish and organisms that they use to entice prey, frighten off predators, or attract partners.
  • Since there aren’t many structures in the deep sea to utilize as cover from predators, many creatures that dwell there adopt transparency as a form of camouflage. Some marine predators also employ transparency to their advantage when capturing unsuspecting prey.
  • Most fish and other deep-sea creatures have unique anatomical structures that their bodies have adapted to in order to survive. For instance, they have developed to have a pressure inside of them that is equivalent to the pressure the water exerts on them. As a result, it is difficult for scientists to study them for once they are on the surface, they cannot withstand the change in pressure and will likely explode.
  • Some of the deep sea fish and creatures will never experience sunlight. They would utilize bioluminescence to locate and snatch up food before it drifts away into the dark.
  • It is believed that many deep-sea creatures are blind. In order to adapt and survive, some have grown enormous eyeballs. Others use pressure changes to pick up on little movements in the water.


  • The Anglerfish is a well-known deep-sea fish. The majority of them are found up to a mile beneath the surface in the Arctic and Atlantic Oceans’ depths. They can grow up to three feet long and are typically brown or grey in color.
  • Only female Anglerfish possess the appendage that gives rise to their name. They have a portion of their spine that protrudes above their mouth and functions as a fishing pole. The very tip of this segment of their spine is covered in bioluminescence, which glows when an angler fish moves it to attract prey.
  • The Common Fangtooth primarily lives in warm and tropical waters. The average length of a fangtooth is only seven inches. Following their preferred diet of crustaceans and other fish, common fangtooths are reported to travel toward the surface at night.
  • Over five miles below the surface, in the Mariana Trench, lives the Mariana Hadal Snailfish. Although they resemble adorable tadpoles, they are the dominant predators in their ecosystems.
  • In the hadal habitat, snailfish are thought to be the most prevalent vertebrate. According to estimates, they can withstand pressure equivalent to that of 1600 elephants. Snailfish are known to have cartilage-heavy skeletons and skulls with gaps that let their bodies combat extreme pressure.
  • The deep-sea dragonfish inhabits deep ocean waters up to 1,500 meters below the surface. The North and Western Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico are the only two places where deep-sea dragonfish may be found.
  • The dragonfish can act as a fishing bait by using its light-producing barbel. Unsuspecting fish that approach too closely are quickly snatched up by the dragonfish strong teeth.


  • The vampire squid is a distinctive member of the cephalopod family since it resembles both squids and octopuses. Despite its horrific name, it is a tiny creature that only gets as long as six inches.
  • The body of a vampire squid is more gelatinous than that of a typical squid and resembles a jellyfish. It can swim surprisingly fast for a gelatinous animal, at speeds of more than two body lengths per second.
  • The sixgill shark is a common species of deep-water shark. They are predatory carnivores that mostly eat crabs, fish, rays, and other sea creatures.
  • At night, sixgill sharks go vertically up to shallower waters to hunt. They typically remain in deep water throughout the day.

Deep Sea Fish Worksheets

This is a fantastic bundle that includes everything you need to know about Deep Sea Fish across 28 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use worksheets that are perfect for teaching kids about Deep Sea Fish, which are fish that live in the deep waters beneath the sunlight.

Complete List of Included Worksheets

Below is a list of all the worksheets included in this document.

  1. Deep Sea Fish Facts
  2. Match It Up
  3. True or False
  4. Unscramble Me
  5. Something in Common
  6. Tell Me About It!
  7. Let’s Learn Some More!
  8. A Deep Dive
  9. Let’s Draw!
  10. Which One Do You Like Best?
  11. DIY Deep Sea Creature

Frequently Asked Questions

What do deep-sea fishes eat?

The food that most life in the deep sea environment relies on upon what comes from things that fall from the sunlit surface waters. This can be in many different forms, like marine snow (tiny dead and rotting animals), fish scales, or poop.

Are deep-sea creatures blind?

Most deep-sea species are blind. They live in a cold, dark, and high-pressure environment where they can’t see anything. To survive there, they’ve developed some strange adaptations. Some create their own light by bioluminescence while others are totally blind.

What is the deepest deep-sea fish?

Researchers have discovered a new species of fish called the Mariana snailfish. This fish is able to live at depths up to 8,000 meters (26,200 feet) and can be found in Guam in the Mariana Trench.

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Use With Any Curriculum

These worksheets have been specifically designed for use with any international curriculum. You can use these worksheets as-is, or edit them using Google Slides to make them more specific to your own student ability levels and curriculum standards.

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