The extraordinary deep-sea lifeforms that feast on sunken carcasses

Date: April 15, 2020

Source: New Scientist
Author: Helen Scales

The alligator lay motionless on a flat expanse of mud and stared into the camera with a toothy grin. Two metres long, its skin covered in dark green scales, it wasn’t in the usual location for a dead reptile.

A day earlier, the carcass had been loaded into a wire cage and lowered over the side of the ship I was aboard. For an hour, it had travelled down to the sea floor, 2 kilometres below. There it was met by a deep-diving submersible with live-feed cameras. Controlled by pilots on the ship, a robotic arm had reached into the cage, picked up the reptile and placed it on the seabed. This was to be the alligator’s final resting place, at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico.

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Posted on Categories General Science