New Species of Fish Found off New Zealand

New Wave Media

February 11, 2013

  • Newscientist
  • theblaze
  • Newscientist Newscientist
  • theblaze theblaze

Scientists from the University of Aberdeen and Te Papa Museum discovered a new species of eelpout that had not previously been known in the southwest Pacific. The voyage covered waters well below the depth to which light penetrates, sampling depths between one to six km on the edge of the Kermadec Trench. It is one of the deepest places on earth with depths exceeding 10 km. The scientists on board RV Kaharoa, from the University of Aberdeen and NIWA, used landers, with cameras attached that free-fall to the seafloor, as well as baited fish traps to attract animals, according to a NIWA statement. Voyage leader Dr. Alan Jamieson from Aberdeen said: The amount of data recovered during the survey was considerable. A lot can be learned and achieved by using fairly basic equipment in the deep sea. Dr. Jamieson continued: “Between this and the previous expeditions we have now sampled from a depth range greater than Mount Everest is high. What makes the whole experience even more personally satisfying is that all the equipment used in these research cruises was designed and constructed at Oceanlab.” He added: A voyage such as this is testament to how feasible scientific research in the deep sea has become. It is no longer the inaccessible, out of reach, part of the world it once was. The technological challenges of the past are being overcome, and shouldn’t limit our responsibility to learn about and understand the deep sea to help ensure the long term health of the deep oceans - one of the largest environments on Earth.” During their seven day voyage near the Kermadec Islands, the Oceanlab team also recorded a new depth record of 6014 yards for a rattail fish and a new depth record for a species of large deep sea cusk eel.


Image: theblaze/newscientist
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