Seeing the amazing photograph led many to wonder if these marine monsters might be mistaken for lake monsters or sea serpents. Could an oarfish (or, more realistically, a family of them) be responsible for sightings of Scotland's famous Loch Ness monster over the years? It's a tantalizing possibility, though scientifically unlikely.
For one thing, oarfish, whether small or huge, are not found in Loch Ness. Oarfish also tend live in temperate to tropical ocean waters and the most famous lake in the Scottish Highlands would likely be too cold for them. Furthermore, oarfish are saltwater fish, while Ness - fed by several large rivers - is freshwater. Though some marine animals, such as several species of dolphins, are known to have adapted to freshwater, oarfish are not among them.
Sharks as Monsters If not an oarfish, then what? In 2012, a researcher offered a new theory about what real animal might be behind some of the Loch Ness reports. Bruce Wright, a senior scientist at the Aleutian Pribilof Island Association, wrote an article suggesting that Nessie sightings may in fact be sleeper sharks, which can reach 20 feet long and weigh more than 4 tons. Wright theorized that the sharks might enter Ness through rivers connected to the ocean.