Life is sweet in the Caribbean, especially if you love the ocean! But the world's seas are massive, and many of its creatures are still unknown. If you speak to locals in the Bahamas, for instance, some will swear that they've seen the lusca sea monster with their own eyes. What is this beast, and why do monster myths persist in today's scientific climate?
Amusingly, the lusca is a whole species of monster, not just a single one - a species that hasn't been proven to exist, naturally. It's called a "cryptid;" the existence of a life-form that has not been proven, without a doubt, by science. When it comes ot lusca, descriptions and reports are based off of carcasses and sightings out in the open ocean. Believers claim that the lusca grows to over 75 feet long (and some swear that the adults break 200 feet!), and it hunts crustaceans in large undersea caves, where it makes its home. Depending on who you ask, the lusca either resembles an enormous octopus, a multi-headed dragon creature, or a half-shark, half-octopus monstrosity.
Swimmers in the Caribbean, especially around the Bahamas, swear that they've seen luscas in "blue holes," the underwater sinkholes that are hundreds of feet deep. In 1896, a carcass washed up on the Florida coast; considered to be the remnants of a lusca, the enormous body was dubbed the St Augustine monster. However, recent evidence shows that the blob was likely just a huge piece of decomposing blubber from a Sperm Whale. The largest octopus ever found wasn't even half of the estimated length of a lusca. Simple to explain too, are the stories of sightings at sea: sightings of especially large giant squids, are the most plausible kinds of encounters.
In fact, decomposing blubber is the culprit in many different "sea monster" sightings; happening with such regularity, these hoaxes have been dubbed by scientists as "globsters." Many of the ocean's creatures are much larger than what we land-dwellers are used to; when a whale dies, for instance, there's a lot of tissue left behind and it decomposes in unfamiliar ways. Heavy bones drop to the ocean floor, but the lighter adipose tissues may get swept up in currents and attacked by carrion eaters. By the time an organic mass washes up on a beach, it's usually unrecognizable; sometimes they contain eyeballs without any surrounding structure, or the creature may have no bones except a few flippers. Sometimes it is skin that seems to make up the bulk of the creature, and sometimes there seems to be no skin present at all! Even the moderately skeptical bystander would be confounded by such a find.
Intriguingly, some globsters do not turn out to be decomposing whale or shark tissue. Some are the remains of colossal squids, and others are still unexplained. This adds fuel to the fire for those in the "sea monster" camp, who remain convinced that these bodies are proof of undiscovered oceanic life. As specific parts of our enormous ocean ecosystem is studied, Marine biologists announce newfound species on a regular basis. Some globster remains are in such an advanced state of decomposition that it's just impossible to verify exactly what they were originally. Whether you believe or not, it's certainly an intriguing and fascinating notion, and a reminder that we still know relatively nothing about the ocean that surrounds us.
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