A deep sea underworld hidden beneath a volcano in the East Pacific Rise has been found by scientists, and it’s full of bizarre sea creatures. Never-before-seen species of snails, worms, and octopuses have been found in the habitat, which resides between hydrothermal vents. Scientists found the ecosystem by using a robotic arm to place mesh boxes over cracks in the Earth’s crust at the bottom of the ocean. When they later looked inside the boxes, they were teeming with life that had emerged from beneath the seafloor. The mysterious ecosystem could be vulnerable to the effects of deep sea mining, and research is now underway to determine how to best protect this unique corner of the sea. The habitat is an incredible discovery that proves there is still much to learn about life in the deep ocean.
Image via Schmidt Ocean Institute
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