Roman Fedortsov has taken to posting pictures of his terrifying finds, his most recent catch being a lumpsucker, or lumpfish – a bluish-grey, ball-like fish with a sucker that enables it to stick to rocks.
But one post, in particular, has caught people’s attention.
A photo of a pinkish fish with a long, feathered tail and lacey wing-like fins went viral after commenters compared it to a baby dragon.
The viral hit has amassed over 23,000 likes on Instagram since it was posted by Mr Fedortsov on 19 March this year.
In the photo’s caption, he wrote: “Just a quote: ‘It’s one thing to chase something nameless, but quite another thing to find it’ – GF Lovecraft.”
“It looks a little like a newly hatched dragon to me,” one person said in the comments, while another added: “Looks like a baby dragon!”
Among swathes of similar observations, another said: “Looks mythological.”
“Well, I think I don’t need to swim in the ocean ever again,” one user added.
The fish has since been identified as a chimaera – a cartilaginous fish.
But Mr Fedortsov’s “ghost shark”, as the species is also known, is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to his peculiar underwater mob.
According to the Daily Mail, Mr Fedortsov, from the northwestern Russian city of Murmansk, is currently working on a boat searching for cod, haddock and mackerel on commercial trawlers, diving up to 3,000 feet below the surface.
He said that many of the creatures brought up from the deep sea die as a result of the change in pressure.
Mr Fedortsov, who studied marine science at university in Murmansk, spends the majority of his time sailing in the Barents Sea, which feeds into the Arctic Ocean.
He also travels to other parts of the world, including the Atlantic Ocean.
Mr Fedortsov’s explorations have yielded an abundance of mystifying and gruesome creatures, among which are some which share an unlikely resemblance to a cheeseburger and a jam doughnut.
He explained to the Daily Mail that he often shares the pictures online in hopes of discovering what rare sea-dweller he has found.
Instagram users often leave comments about the strange appearance of many of the creatures, but Mr Fedortsov said that he sees the beauty in all of his finds.
“In their own way, all of these creatures are beautiful,” the 39-year-old told the newspaper.
“All kinds of fish are beautiful in their own way. I cannot say that they are ‘scary’ or ‘ugly.’ People are very interested in unusual sea creatures,” he said.
“Readers have the impression that with each trawl we bring aboard unusual fish specimens,” the fisherman added. “In fact, this is far from the case. It is a rarity.
“On the other hand, even a famous fish can be photographed so that it will seem to be a ‘monster.’”
But Mr Fedortsov is not alone in posting his unusual finds on social media in a bid to decipher his whacky discoveries.
Queensland man Alex Tan was dumfounded when he came across the remains while walking on Maroochydore Beach on the Sunshine Coast, about 63 miles north of Brisbane in March.
He said he came across the creature not long after floods hit the area.
“I’ve stumbled across something weird,” he said to the camera in an Instagram post. “This is like one of those things you see when people claim they’ve found aliens.”
In the same month, an eerie creature resembling an embryo was found on a street in Sydney, leaving social media users bemused as to what it was.
A man named Harry Hayes posted on his Instagram a short video of a slimy creature with tiny eyes. While jogging on Monday morning, Mr Hayes stumbled upon it and when he posted the video online, no one, not even academicians and experts, could tell what it was.
Mr Hayes wrote on his Instagram: “Found this on the road, wtf is it?”
Users were equally at the loss of words. One wrote: “Wait do we know what it is?”
Beachgoers in California were stunned in May last year when a jet-black creature with a gaping underbite, spikey teeth and a tentacle covered appendage and bulb protruding from its head, washed washed up on the shores of San Diego.
Scientists at the city’s Institution of Oceanography University soon identified it as a Pacific football fish, a deep-sea dweller.