When thinking of the freaky creatures that call Earth's oceans home, the lowly sea sponge usually doesn't rank very high.
However, after learning about what researchers found during a deep-sea expedition off the coast of Hawaii, you may want to rethink your ranking system.
Officials from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) discovered a truly massive, 1,000-year-old sea sponge while using their new Okeanos Explorer vessel. They encountered the creature at a depth of 7,000 feet. To give you a sense of just how big this thing is, those who saw it compared it to a minivan.
Luckily for us, they had their cameras rolling the whole time.
(via Unexplained Mysteries)
I never thought I'd see the day when I feared a sea sponge, but anything is possible, I guess. Sure, this critter isn't dangerous to humans, but its sheer size is a little frightening.