But looking up info on oarfish, I came across Mark Benfield‘s work at Louisiana State University. He’s working with oil and gas industry ROVs — submersible robots — to study wildlife. Hey, its the least the industry could do. No, seriously, the very least.
Last spring, Benfield published the first account of Stygiomedusa gigantea, a giant jellyfish, in the Gulf of Mexico. They aren’t trawler-eating big, but they are still fairly huge. They are apparently fond of grabbing onto underwater structures — such as pipelines or oil rigs — to use as a base for feeding. See, the oil industry is providing a valuable service!
Discover Magazine interviewed Benfield last month. Cool, shudder-inducing vid: