A so-called "horned monster" washed up on a Spanish beach recently may be an Oarfish, according to some claims surrounding the mysterious sea creature this week. Oarfish are a giant species of fish, rumored to grow up to more than 50 feet long in size. The fish is rumored to have inspired tales of sea serpents and sea monsters from sailors for centuries.
However, last week a giant fish carcass was washed up on a Spanish beach, which has drawn huge attention, with many comparing it to the legendary Scottish Loch Ness Monster.
The giant fish was found on Luis Siret Beach in the village of Villaricos.
Locals have described that the carcass had large horns sticking out from the head, although the fish was in advanced stages of decomposition and smelled horrible at the time it was found.
Researchers in Spain are now attempting to identify the remains, however, they are having trouble as the giant fish was so badly decomposed.
The fish in this case was about 13 feet long, and despite some calling it an Oarfish, others have claimed it was a thresher shark.
"It's hard to tell," David Shiffman, a University of Miami shark researcher told NBC News in a Twitter exchange. "But the official guess that it could be a thresher shark seems plausible."
Shiffman suggested that it could be an Oarfish – ordinarily found to be about 10 feet long and is think and long. However, some have been known to grow to a giant size of nearly 60 feet long.
"Certainly the tail looks oarfish-y," Shiffman wrote. "It maybe could be a thresher shark — but nothing else."
Oarfish are not often seen as their natural environment is in the deep sea, and they rarely wash up on shore.
In one video from 2011, a research crew was able to video an oarfish at a depth of 364 feet below surface. In that case the oarfish was about 26 feet long.