Coral reefs, sea creatures and ship ruins; these are the things one usually expects to find in an underwater expedition. You will be amazed at the discoveries made during such activities. Here are the 10 most amazing scuba diving finds in history.
10. Wedding Ring
Eirian Evans was on his honeymoon with his wife Bethan in Australia. The two Brits were newly married, and Eirian was not yet used to the feel of a ring on his finger. So he kept playing with it even when they were out snorkeling. Suddenly, the ring slipped off and went to the bottom of the sea. The two begged and cajoled their tour guides to look for the ring, but the guides went back up empty handed. They thought the ring was gone forever, until the following year when a diver found the ring lodged in a coral while he was inspecting the seabed. For the ring to survive is amazing because fish are often attracted to shiny or sparkling objects.
9. Message in a Bottle
On June 30, 1915, Matilda Esper and Selina Pramstaller were having fun while aboard the Tashmoo ship. At the back of the ticket, the two friends wrote, “Having fun at Tashmoo.” They then wrote down the date, their names and addresses, placed the paper inside a heavy bottle, and threw the bottle into a river. The bottle stayed at the bottom for 97 years, until David Leander found it while diving in 2012.
8. Underwater Monument
In 1987, Kihachiro Aratake was looking for a nice place to observe hammerhead sharks. He then noticed some formations that looked like architectonic structures. He asked a group of scientists from the University of the Ryukyus for help. The divers discovered a monument made of a rectangular formation measuring 150 by 40 meters and standing 27 meters tall. The tip of the monument is 5 meters below the sea level.
7. Extinct Monkey Fossils
Scuba divers found the fossils of an extinct monkey in the Dominican Republic. The discovery was made in 2010. The bones belonged to a Hispaniola monkey, a species that was wiped out during the 16th century. The cranium of the monkey was almost complete, and the thighbones were very thick. This particular discovery helped boost the emerging popularity of underwater paleontology.
6. Skeleton of an Unknown Mammal
During the summer of 2007, scuba divers made an amazing discovery while underwater in the high Arctic of Canada. It happened while they were on an expedition on Devon Island in Nunavut near the crater of a meteor impact site. They discovered skeletons and upon careful and scientific analysis and dating, they found out that the fossils were from a previously unknown species of mammals. The species is now being called the Puijila Darwini. What was more amazing was that after further carbon dating analysis, the skeleton turned out to be between 20 million and 24 million years old. The Canadian Museum of Nature hailed the discovery as a breakthrough. It said that because of this, more information is now available on the evolution of the pinnipeds, or the group of animals that includes the sea lions, walruses and seals. The skeleton will give new light in the earliest stages of the evolutionary transition from land to sea of the said animals.
5. Indian Temples
Indians grew up hearing stories about great temples that used to exist in Mahabalipuram. The temples were along the coasts of the bustling sea port and was flushed out to the sea. A lot of people thought it was just a tale, but after a tsunami hit that part of the country in 2004, it turned out the tales were actually real. Archaeologists have found stone structures around six feet tall, all of which are marked with elaborate and intricate carvings. These have been dated all the way back to the seventh century.
4. Prehistoric Shark Tooth
While diving in Florida just off the coast of Venice Beach one day, a scuba diver noticed something really huge underwater. It looked like a shark’s tooth, only it was about three times longer and four times wider than other shark’s tooth he has seen. He took his discovery back to the surface and found it to be slightly larger than a dollar bill. When he had it analyzed, experts say it probably belongs to a shark called the megalodon shark. This animal is a super sized shark that existed during the prehistoric era.
3. Wickedest City on Earth
Port Royal in Jamaica used to be a pirate’s haven. In 1692, an earthquake and tsunami sank the entire city into the sea. It has remained preserved however, and along with several hundred sunken ships in the area, the place is now considered as one of the most important underwater sites in the world.
2. Egyptian Civilization
Heracleion was an ancient city in Egypt near the Alexandria. Also known as Thonis, it was the country’s main port during the 12th century BC during the last few years of the Pharaohs. Helen of Troy and Hercules were said to have visited this place, and the Pharaoh Nectanebo was so fond of the place that he made several additions to the temples. Earthquakes and floods, however, doomed the city and it sank to the bottom of the sea. In 2000, Franck Goddio rediscovered the city and has since found sculptures, giant tablets and other artifacts dating to the city’s time.
1. An Entire City Underneath
In 1967, Nicholas Flemming discovered something strange in Greece. It looked like not just a single structure, but actually several buildings. A team of archaeologists from Cambridge University came and helped him map his discovery. It turned out to be an entire city. It had buildings, roads, and even tombs. It was named the Pavlopetri, or Paul’s and Peter’s, which is the modern name of the nearby island and beach where the discovery was made. The name of the ancient city, however, remains unknown. At least 15 buildings have been found, including one as recent as 2009. It has been dated back to 2800 B.C., with some of its materials coming from the Bronze Age.