Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) deep sea creatures

MBARI’s Research Division Chair Dr. Bruce Robison describes his work on the biodiversity of the deep sea:”The largest living space on Earth is the vast volume of water between the sea surface and the deep seafloor. Not surprisingly, this enormous global habitat is home to the largest ecosystems on our planet.”
Read more about the deep and enjoy the images captured by MBARI’s ROVs here:
Photos (© MBARI):
T - The mystery mollusc has no name yet and is in the process of being described by MBARI scientists. It is a new species, a new genus, and a new family of molluscs that lives 2,000 m deep in the Monterey Canyon. 
2L - Colobonema is a pretty little medusa that drops its tentacles, like a lizard dropping its tail, when threatened by a predator. 
2R - Physophora is a small siphonophore, about 6 cm long, that feeds on small crustaceans that it traps with stinging cells in its tentacles. 
3 - Apolemia is a siphonophore, a long chain of specialized individuals, and a paradox because it behaves like a single organism. Some siphonophores reach lengths of 40 m, this one is about 3 m long.
4L - Crossota is a medusa that feeds in sediments on the seafloor, then it swims up into the water column to digest its meal and to relocate by riding currents.
4M - Anoplogaster is the scientific name of this fangtooth fish. Some of its teeth are so long that they don’t fit within its mouth.
4R - Aulococtena is a ctenophore or comb jelly. This is an undescribed species from deep in the Monterey Canyon.
B - Macropinna is also known as a barreleye. The green spheres within its transparent head are the lenses of its tubular eyes. The upward looking eyes silhouette the prey against dim down-welling surface light.

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