Rafters make chilling discovery in crystal-clear water

This article originally appeared and was published on AOL.com

An astounding photo is, once again, making the rounds on the internet.

People can’t seem to get enough of the shocking picture, which was originally captured in Svalbard, Norway, in 2010.

While the original image, which was shared on Flickr by user ‘buen viaje,’ is no longer available, it continues to pop up in various corners of the web. 

The photo depicts a group of travelers who came across a startlingly-large spinal column just beneath the surface of the Arctic Ocean. According to HuffPost, the carcass belonged to a fin whale. The photographer claims that polar bears had been feeding on the vast remains for well over a year. 

Image via Flickr/buenviaje/Reddit/Wking28

Unbeknown to the group of tourists, they actually stumbled upon something incredibly rare.

What makes this find so impressive is that the spinal column was found completely intact while submerged in water. According to the National Oceanography Centre, only 6 natural whale skeletons have ever been discovered on the ocean floor.

Scavengers of the deep blue are typically responsible for the destruction of skeletal remains such as whale carcasses.

After the flesh of a dead whale has either been eaten by larger creatures or started to naturally decompose, various smaller organisms move in to feast on the remaining nutrients, reducing the former giant of the ocean to mere bits and pieces.

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