5,000 Amazing New Undersea Species Discovered in Marine Census (Pics)
Photo via the BBC
The decade-long project of completing an exhaustive census of marine life is finally drawing to a close. And from the early reports, it's been quite a success: the Census of Marine life has been reported to have uncovered no less than 5,000 new species, and it has provided vital information about the health of sea life populations. We'll have to wait until October of this year to get the full report, but here's a look at some of the bizarre new creatures discovered.We've already dipped into some of the creatures the COML has uncovered from the deep, but those were just the tip of the iceberg (there are so many potential puns in that last sentence I don't even know where to begin). The BBC reports that the COML has just unveiled a preview, revealing strange creatures that no one even knew existed. Like that feathery crab thing up there--who would've thought that thing was real?
For the record, it's a hirsuta crab--a crab so unlike anything ever seen before that scientists had to come up with a brand new family designation for it.
Or what about this blind lobster with strange chelipeds (those claw-things) found at 300 meters below sea level?
This fish, the chiasmodon niger, is also being called the great swallower--it can ingest prey that's actually bigger than it and store it in its huge stomach. Which is weird, but maybe not as weird as a fish that lives without red blood cells in Antarctica . . .