‘Brittlestar City’ found on huge seamount in Antarctica

This is a video of a brittlestar in an aquarium, eating.

From Wildlife Extra:

Marine scientists marvel at vast “Brittlestar City” found on huge seamount in Antarctica

Census of Marine Life-affiliated scientists, investigating the secrets of a vast underwater mountain range south of New Zealand, captured the first images of an amazing “Brittlestar City” that, against daunting odds, has colonized the peak of a seamount – an underwater summit taller than the world’s tallest building.

Its cramped starfish-like inhabitants, tens of millions of them, living arm tip to arm tip, owe their success to the seamount’s shape and to the swirling circumpolar current flowing over and around it at roughly four kilometres per hour. It allows these brittlestars to capture passing food simply by raising their arms, and it sweeps away fish and other hovering would-be predators.

Discovery of this marine metropolis, along with important new insights into seamount geology and physics, were the highlights of a month-long expedition to survey the Macquarie Ridge aboard the Research Vessel Tangaroa of New Zealand’s National Institute of Water & Atmospheric Research, host of the Census of Marine Life seamount programme, CenSeam. The voyage was largely funded by the New Zealand Foundation for Research, Science and Technology.

Undersea Mountain Photos: Brittlestar Swarm, More Found: here.

Changes to the Antarctic ice shelf are causing seals to fight for air and penguins to give up on their young, here.

Film maker Werner Herzog and Antarctica: here.

Brittle stars (Echinodermata: Ophiuroidea) from La Réunion and the systematic position of Ophiocanops Koehler, 1922: here.

Britllestars in the Dutch Oosterschelde: here.

Antarctic Worms, Sea Spiders, Urchins Pounded By Icebergs: here.

Chile Enacts Landmark Fishing Reforms, Protects All Seamounts: here.

11 thoughts on “‘Brittlestar City’ found on huge seamount in Antarctica

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