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An empty big blue

Amelie Scheltema ascheltema at mail.whoi.edu
Fri Aug 27 05:39:35 EST 1999

The best introduction to the natural history of the deep sea is the book by Gage, J.D. & Tyler, P.A., 
1991, Deep-sea biology: a natural history of organisms at the deep-sea floor. Cambridge University 
Press, xvi + 504 pp. 


 >I once thought the way you currently do until I took a Benthic Marine
 >Biology course in University
 >this summer. The deep sea is environmentally stable habitat but it is
 >nutrient poor. Most nutrients
 >become used up while in the water column and never make it to the deep
 >ocean floor. The animal
 >density is very low in this area but there are a great number of species
 >that survive  there. If
 >fact, there are more species found in the sediment of the Deep sea than
 >there are in any other area
 >of the ocean. Other areas of the ocean undergo drastic changes in
 >salinity, temperature...etc which
 >pose many physiological demands on organisms living there. Hydrothermal
 >vents are an example of deep
 >sea habitat. This particular deep sea environment is abundant with
 >chemoautotrophic bacteria,
 >vestimentifera worms, bivalves...etc. Do some reading...you'll soon
 >realize that it is a WONDERFUL
 >place!!! I hope I've helped!!
 > Jon Gottsche & Shelley Parker wrote:
 > > Hi, I was told that the deep sea is pretty barren ( native life ) in
 >comparision to the coastal
 > > regions of the oceans.  If that is so, where would one draw a line to
 >say, " here is an abundence
 >of life, here is an area of little life."
 > >

 Dr. Amelie H. Scheltema Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution Woods Hole, MA 02543 USA Tel: 
508/289-2337 FAX: 508-457-2134 ascheltema at whoi.edu (Amelie Scheltema) 



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