Friday Deep-Sea Picture (03/30/07)

desmophyllum_dianthus.jpg

A “living fossil” Desmophyllum, a solitary coral aged to 3000 years.

Dr. M (1800 Posts)

Craig McClain is the Executive Director of the Lousiana University Marine Consortium. He has conducted deep-sea research for 20 years and published over 50 papers in the area. He has participated in and led dozens of oceanographic expeditions taken him to the Antarctic and the most remote regions of the Pacific and Atlantic. Craig’s research focuses on how energy drives the biology of marine invertebrates from individuals to ecosystems, specifically, seeking to uncover how organisms are adapted to different levels of carbon availability, i.e. food, and how this determines the kinds and number of species in different parts of the oceans. Additionally, Craig is obsessed with the size of things. Sometimes this translated into actually scientific research. Craig’s research has been featured on National Public Radio, Discovery Channel, Fox News, National Geographic and ABC News. In addition to his scientific research, Craig also advocates the need for scientists to connect with the public and is the founder and chief editor of the acclaimed Deep-Sea News (http://deepseanews.com/), a popular ocean-themed blog that has won numerous awards. His writing has been featured in Cosmos, Science Illustrated, American Scientist, Wired, Mental Floss, and the Open Lab: The Best Science Writing on the Web.


4 Replies to “Friday Deep-Sea Picture (03/30/07)”

  1. That is a lovely photo and makes me think about the IMAX Deep Sea 3-D movie I saw at the Houston Museum of Natural Science yesterday. No, barnacles weren’t having hot steamy sex, but they did show them briefly feeding. Narrated by Kate Winslet and Johhny Depp, it was a bit corny at times, but I have to say the polarized 3-D viewing is excellent. The reefs were beautiful as were the swarms of moon jellyfish, etc. Since they focused on “cleaning stations,” the theme was the symbiotic relationships of coral reefs, including sharks. So, I was pleased with the message. The kids enjoyed it, too: eels popping out at them, peaceful turtles, and a mantis shrimp beating up on an octopus. Have you seen this IMAX movie? It ended with the Flower Gardens reef in the Gulf of Mexico showing it’s mysterious annual August spawning. That is really a fascinating phenomenom and beautiful to watch.

  2. Kate Winslet was one of our best Friday Deep Sea Pictures! The movie must be good. Cleaning stations make it seem like everyone’s friends undersea, don’t they?

  3. >>>Cleaning stations make it seem like everyone’s friends undersea, don’t they?

    Ha, briefly! They point out that the tiger sand sharks and their “cleaning friends” call a truce – away from the reef they’re backstabbing friends. :-)

    They show plenty of reef denizens chomping on their reef neighbors, and the agressive Humboldt squid fighting over fish. The nudibranch sucking down a sea anemone is lots of fun, too. What I like about this particular IMAX movie is that there are no sharks eating, just lots of interesting creatures the general public doesn’t know about. I’m having trouble finding detailed information about the mola molas mentioned in the film; they said they congregate to be cleaned at some non-reef spot off of California and they wonder how they know to always go there. Do you know what spot they’re speaking of?

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