Sunken Logs Create New Worlds for Seafloor Animals
(Click to enlarge) This photomontage shows some of the small animals that colonized bundles of acacia wood that sat on the deep seafloor, 3,200 meters below the surface, for five years (note penny for scale). The animals include boring clams (lower left), polychaete worms (upper left and lower right), snails and limpets (bottom), shrimp-like tanaids and amphipods (center), and a crinoid sea lily (middle right). (Credit: Craig McClain © 2012)
When it comes to food, most of the deep sea is a desert. Many seafloor animals feed on marine snow — the organic remnants of algae and animals that live in the sunlit surface waters, far above.
(From ScienceDaily) – However, marine snow only falls as a light dusting and doesn’t have much nutritional value. Thus, any other sources of food that reach the deep sea provide a temporary feast. Read the full story »