35 Nightmare Sea Monsters

By Joe Burgett
35 Nightmare Sea Monsters

Man first began to set sail on the sea a little over 10,000 years ago. When this occurred, a lot of new things came about that would become widespread eventually. Mankind came across new and different animals, both big and small. Both could be man-eaters and/or quite ferocious. This led to ancient sailors speaking of horrifying sea monsters for centuries.

Religious texts such as the Torah, Quran, and Holy Bible mention monsters as well as massive sea creatures. Heck, the Bible has an entire story about a man named Jonah being swallowed by a whale, where he stayed for 3 days and 3 nights. Tales like this, both true and exaggerated, are rampant in world history.

Some of these come from real-life accounts that were embellished to help add some sort of mystique or ora around sailing, which only resulted in more people sailing open waters and having their own fun. Sometimes, however, the stories were as real as a heart attack. These tales are the ones we wanted to explore.

Out of all of these horrifying sea creatures from mythology, history, tall tales, and others…which ones come from real-life encounters of actual sea creatures? On top of this, what horrifying sea creatures are still out there today that people can come in contact with?

We’re about to end the myths and set the record straight while also making you want to hold off on that next cruise you were so hyped to go on. These are the real most horrifying sea creatures of all time!


Shipworms Eating Wood [Image via Hakai Magazine]

35. Shipworms

Shipworms may not seem like something you’d consider horrifying, but if you spoke to sailors hundreds of years ago, they might have a different story. The shipworms were well-known during the era of wooden ships, which was at its height for centuries until mankind realized there were several other buoyant materials possible to use.

Shipworms eat through wood, resulting in wooden ships having entire hulls eaten as well as the bottoms of their ships. This is obviously a terrible issue when on the water. They’re not very small like most worms tend to be, they can get pretty sizable, so it’s easy to spot them. There are even giant versions of the species that can get as big as a large tree branch in width. Sadly, by the time people spot them, the shipworms usually have already done some significant damage.