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Kabutops

The kabutops (chlamydotups Anguineaus) is one of the three species in the family chlamydotups with narrow distribution in the Pacific Ocean. This species is found over the outer oceanic zone, mostly located near the bottom. It has been caught as deep as 7,000 meters (22,965.88 ft.). Close to the islands of Hawaii, it is most common at depths of 5,000 meters. This peculiar species exhibits several primitive features; kabutops has been termed a “living fossil” by multiple marine archeologists. The first marine archeologist that ever caught a kabutops was Dr. Ash Ketshup, from Palet Town, U.S. Kabutps can reach a length of 3.5 meters and has sharp bones on their upper arm that helps them hunt.

Dr. Ketshup observed kabutops captures its prey by bending its body and creating a spring like with its body to get a fast start when trying to catch a prey. Their long sharp arms, helps them to capture its prey by slashing them and cutting any part of its prey. Kabutops usually feed on other small deep-sea creatures, but they can capture something as big as a shark. Kabutops is aplacental viviparous: the embryos emerge from inside the mother’s uterus, and they usually survive primarily on yolk. The gestation period can last as long as two years. The IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) put them on the danger of extinction list, due to its low reproductive rate. 

The American marine archeologist Ash Ketshup first scientifically recognized Kabutops. Dr. Ketshup had an expedition of the deep sea close to the coast of Japan in 1934. While exploring deep waters, the Dr. and his crew saw a fascinating creature getting closer to them. This kabutops was trying to capture the crew; luckily they were safe inside their capsule. When the creature tried to use its sharp claws, its claws got stuck in the metal of the capsule. After its capture, the crew took this unknown species to the university of Santa Cruz, trying to understand what this creature was. Dr. Ketshup published an article “Rarest creatures on Earth” in 1936.  After this article was published, National Geographic was interested in this discovery. Moreover, National Geographic gave Dr. Ketshup all the tools, technology and team to go capture and study more in depth these creatures because they did not have a lot knowledge about them. The first expedition took place on the summer of 1940. They took few years to fully prepare for it because it was considered dangerous to go that deep in the ocean. The expedition was not very successful because they were only able to capture 3 more kabutops, and 4 of their 20-crew members died during the expedition. One of their findings was that kabutps do not travel on groups; they tend to be very aggressive between males. Also, Kabutops can hide easily. Its body can blend with its surroundings changing its skin tone. After this expedition, there were only 3 more. The department that National Geographic gave to Dr. Ketshup stopped the research due to high rate of deaths of crewmembers from the expeditions. Since then, no other organization has been brave enough to go search for more kabutops and learn more about them.

Luis Ortiz