Monkfish Sits on Geometric Columnar Basalt

ROV Hercules captured this footage of stunning deep sea columnar basalt while diving on ancient volcanos around 1,700 meters deep in a canyon North of Molokai. Basalt is an igneous rock that, as lava, cools in a particular way that creates these unique hexagonal columns. Keep watching, and you’ll even glimpse a monkfish (also known as a goosefish) sitting on these geological wonders. These anglerfishes in the family Lophiidae are always crowd-pleasers due to their “grumpy” looking facial expressions. 

The Hawaiian Islands are part of the oldest, longest, and most remote island chains on Earth, and have been a key natural laboratory for many important scientific discoveries. This 14-day telepresence-enabled expedition (NA156) is conducting ROV surveys across some of the most dramatic deep-sea habitats surrounding the Main Hawaiian Islands, and testing a new wide-field camera array system across a wide range of complex topographical features. 

Learn more about this expedition funded by the Office of Naval Research.