Deep-sea critter madness: new species, new photos

I love Wired.*

Sea cucumber.  And nope, it's not CG...
Sea cucumber. And nope, it's not CG...

I also love strange deep-sea critters, and brilliant photos of them.  So this recent article in Wired is a quite a treat.

Captured between 700 and 3,660 (or so) metres** deep along the mid-Atlantic ridge***, it showcases 10 new deepwater species which are intriguing scientists for a slew of different reasons, including what they might teach us about the move from being spineless, to having backbone (and no, that wasn’t a metaphor for growing a pair).

It’s also, says the article, a reminder that :

“…we cannot just study what lives around the edges of the ocean and ignore the vast array of animals living on the slopes and valleys in the middle of the ocean.”

Which I would have thought was, um, self-evident.  But yes.  Anyway, marvel at the wondrous beasties!  And all hail to the people at the University of Aberdeen, who found and photographed them.

HT: Gareth Renowden, for pointing to the article :)


* So much so that I was almost**** tempted to buy an iPad. Srsly. (For the uninitiated, Wired’s app on the iPad is really, really lovely.  Really.)

** Measurements originally in feet. Can we please, please all convert to the metric system already?

*** Which is a very, very big mountain range. The largest on Earth, in fact.


**** But not quite.  Hah!  Also, footnoting footnotes?  Excessive, or fun?