Two major expeditions took place in the last few months. The first explored Celebes Sea south of the Philippines from the surface to a depth 2700m.
“This is probably the center where many of the species evolved and spread to other parts of the ocean, so it’s going back to the source in many ways,” Madin [the expedition leader] stated.
The project involved the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and National Geographic Magazine in cooperation with the Philippine government, which also provided the exploration ship.
The most striking creature found was a spiny orange-colored worm that had 10 tentacles like a squid, Madin said. “We don’t know what it is … it might be something new,” he said.
In the second expedition, researchers from Fisheries and Oceans Canada and Memorial University of Newfoundland conducted a survey of the deep off the coasts of Nova Scotia and Newfoundland during a three-week mission in July 2007. The focus was primarily deep-water corals.
The mission revealed that life in these waters is much more diverse than previously realized. Researchers captured over 3,000 high quality photographs that displayed this diversity, including an octopus with large fins near its eyes, known as “Dumbo,” a potentially new species of scallop, and a single-celled organism previously unknown in this region
Top left: In this photo released by the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) and the National Geographic Society-led Inner Space Speciation Project (ISSP) shows a sample of zooplankton collected with a Tucker Trawl with a 10mm opening wherein one can find jellyfish, a lanternfish, a snipe eel, two orange shrimp, a pyrosome (which is bioluminescent) as shown at a briefing Tuesday Oct. 16, 2007 aboard the Philippine research vessel BRP Prisbitero off Manila Bay in Manila, Philippines. A joint team of Filipino and American scientists that explored the Celebes Sea in southern Philippines early this month, announced the marine-life discoveries following their return from their voyage Tuesday. (AP Photo/WHOI/ISSP, Larry Madin HO)
Second Center: Colourful coral species on a vertical cliff in the Stone Fence. The ROPOS mission uncovered coral as old as 800 years.
Third Center: This Dumbo Octopus from the Sable Gully MPA received its name because of the large fins located on either side of its head.
Fourth Center: A Basket Star embedded in Bubblegum Coral.