Posts Tagged ‘life’

Open Wide

The jaw of the loosejaw dragonfish (Photostomias goodyeari) is a marvel of the animal kingdom. It has no floor and is only attached by a hinge, a tendon, and a modified tongue bone. This series of images shows the incredible extent to which it can open it’s jaw—an indication of the size of the prey…

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Up Close with a Lancetfish

Lancetfish

One of the highlights from the mid-water trawl last night on NOAA Ship Henry B. Bigelow was this lancetfish (Alepisaurus ferox). Lancetfish are one of the top predators in the twilight zone and can grow to more than 2 meters (6 feet) in length—though this one was only about 15 inches. They are also voracious…

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Mesobot Dives into the Twilight Zone for the First Time

Mesobot using red light in a test tank

The newly developed deep sea robot, Mesobot, dove down to 300m for the first time last week during a successful test and evaluation cruise off Monterey Bay. Mesobot is designed to let scientists observe the twilight zone by autonomously tracking individual animals for hours or even days without disturbing the environment or disrupting their behavior.

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Discovering the Ocean Twilight Zone with Joel Llopiz

Photo of bristlemouth

Most life forms in the twilight zone are tiny—a few inches or less—but even the smallest twilight zone inhabitants are powerful through sheer number. Joel Llopiz, Associate Scientist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, is part of the Ocean Twilight Zone (OTZ) project. The project is embarking on a bold new journey to explore one…

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Entering the Ocean Twilight Zone with Heidi Sosik

Heidi Sosik and Paul Caiger in a manned submersible.

It is hard to describe what it’s like to physically travel down to the twilight zone. In addition to extraordinary bioluminescence, Heidi Sosik, senior scientist at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and Ocean Twilight Zone (OTZ) project lead, was able to observe beautiful jellies and small fishes like bristlemouths, hatchetfish, and lanternfish, all in their natural…

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Fish with Flashlights

Sloan viper fish

Down in the dark and shadowy mesopelagic layer of the ocean, countless species—bristlemouths, lanternfishes, jellies, and others—have a natural ability to generate their own light through chemical reactions. Most twilight zone animals produce blue light—the color that penetrates the farthest through seawater—but some also produce flashes of red, yellow, and green. Collectively, the lights form…

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