Books  Marine & Freshwater Life  Marine Fauna & Flora 

Creatures of the Deep: In Search of the Sea's Monsters and the World They Live in

Art / PhotobookPopular Science

By: Erich Hoyt(Author)

288 pages, 100+ colour photos

Firefly Books

Hardback | Nov 2014 | Edition: 2 | #214391 | ISBN-13: 9781770852815
Availability: Usually dispatched within 6 days Details
NHBS Price: £24.99 $34/€28 approx

About this book

In this revised and updated edition of Creatures of the Deep, award-winning nature and science writer Erich Hoyt gives readers a glimpse of the amazing variety of creatures found in the deepest parts of the ocean. Weaving together details from the latest scientific research about sharks, giant squid, dragonfish, huge tube worms, clams and tiny microbes of the deep-sea vents, Hoyt embarks on a magical journey roaming across the abyssal plains and descending into deep-sea trenches more than 6000 metres down.

In Creatures of the Deep Hoyt unravels the complex predator-prey relationships, from 'killer' copepods to battles between giant squid and sperm whales, presenting compelling portraits of animals that are superbly adapted denizens of a dark high-pressure world. There are life forms, independent of sunlight and photosynthesis, which flourish around the hot, sulfurous deep-sea vents in the magnificent rift valley of the mid-ocean ridge, the world's longest mountain range.

Surviving in conditions that appear to be close to the very soup of primordial Earth, these microbes have become the basis for the latest research into Earth's origins. Creatures of the Deep is fully illustrated with fantastic underwater imagery.

"Winner, Outstanding Nonfiction Book of the Year"
- American Society of Journalists and Authors, 2014-06-01


Praise for the first edition:

"More than a picture book [...] Hoyt's elegant writing provides both the historical background for deep-sea exploration and an ecological perspective on life in the ocean's depths."
- American Scientist, 2001-11-01

"A brisk history of deep sea research [...] as engagingly descriptive as he is instructive, Hoyt takes readers on an extensive tour through the underwater zones [...] Teen science buffs will enjoy the photographs and Hoyt's animation and clarity."
- Donna Seaman, Booklist 2001-12-01

"Erich Hoyt, an award-winning science writer, gives readers an amazing tour of the ocean world through an underwater camera in this fascinating book. He examines former and current sea monsters which dwell at various depths of the ocean. His purpose is to dispel misconceptions and turn these monsters into animals worthy of humans' respect, patient curiosity and admiration. This book has several strengths: the text provides a wealth of interesting information; the colour photographs are no less than fabulous, affording readers a glimpse into the murky ocean world; and, perhaps, most important of all, Hoyt's obvious passion for the ocean and the myriad life forms it harbors comes through loud and clear. Highly Recommended."
- Gail Hamilton, Canadian Materials 2002-03-01

"Creatures of the Deep separates monster fact from fiction, with nature writer Erich Hoyt plunging to the depths of the world's oceans in search of the ogres."
- Paul Allen, Geographical [UK], 2002-03-01

"Accompanied by stunning photographs of little-known creatures [...] the detailed but highly readable text traces a history of myths and discoveries of the oceans."
- The Globe and Mail, 2001-11-24

"Hoyt [...] shares his enthusiasm for and knowledge about the extraordinary creatures of the deep sea [...] [The book has a] knowledgeable and accessible approach to marine life and high quality photography."
- Mary Nickum, Library Journal, 2001-12-01

"Hoyt unravels the complex predator-prey relationships from "killer" copepods to battles among giant squids and sperm whales, presenting compelling portraits of animals that are superbly adapted denizen of a dark high-pressure world."
- Newsletter of the National Association of Science Writers [UK], 2002-01-01

"Combines dramatic photographs with extraordinary tales of undersea life."
- Publishers Weekly 2001-10-01

"The most striking element [...] are the more than 150 color photographs that capture everything from sea cucumbers to vampire squids in all their watery glory."
- Rachel Robb, Quill and Quire 2001-10-01

"The general summary of the ocean's layers, specific views of the selected "monsters," and the perspective of the life and environment interaction combine to make this book a splendid overview. The photographs, sidebars, and unique life-forms presented offer opportune ways of catching the attention of reluctant readers."
- Pam Johnson, School Library Journal, 2002-02-01

"A bevy of interesting creatures [...] The book benefits tremendously from vivid color photographs of the featured creatures."
- Science News, 2001-09-22

"The deep is a wondrous place, Hoyt tells us convincingly. It is another world, concealing mysteries locked up in mountain chains and valleys that may hold the key to how life began at all."
- Judith Isabella, Victoria Times Colonist, 2002-01-20

"Outstanding photographs and a well-written, enthusiastic text [...] a worthwhile addition to school science collections."
- Rayna Patton VOYA [Voice of Youth Advocates], 2002-04-01

Related titles

See the previous edition

Creatures of the Deep

Weaving together details from the latest scientific research about sharks,...

NHBS Price: £27.95 $38/€32 approx


Author's Note

Part One
    Down Through the Layers
    The Layers of the Sea
    Surface Waters: The Epipelagic (Euphotic) Zone
    Middle Waters: The Mesopelagic (Disphotic) Zone
    Deep Waters: The Bathypelagic (Aphotic) Zone
    Deeper Waters: The Abyssopelagic Zone
    Deepest Waters: The Hadal Zone

Part Two
    A Fish-Eat-Fish World
    Planktonic Dramas
    The Cosmopolitan Copepod
    Jellyfish: Biding Time
    Big Sharks: The Plankton-Strainers
    Dancing with Squid
    Big Sharks: The Flesh-Eaters
    Killer Whale vs. Shark
    Down Deep with Dragonfish
    The Web

Part Three
    Trekking Down the Ridge
    The Longest Mountain Chain in the World
    The World Ocean Floor
    Creatures in the Sulfur Garden
    Farther Along the Ridge and Back in Time
    Black Smokers and New Life-Forms
    Life Among the Archaeans

Part Four
    Counting the Citizens of the Sea
    The Census of Marine Life
    Finding a Place for Ocean Citizens to Live
    Deciding on the Kind of Ocean We Want or Life Among the Jellyfish

Sources and Resources
Photo Credits

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Erich Hoyt has spent much of his life on, beneath or near the sea, working with whales and dolphins and marine conservation. The acclaimed author of Orca: The Whale Called Killer and many other books, Hoyt lives and works in North Berwick, Scotland.

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