JEWEL-LIKE CRUSTACEAN FROM THE DEEP SEA
Amphipods are small crustacean that inhabits all acuatic environments, from ocean depths to groundwater, in freshwater systems, also found in caves and sea ice. Their feeding strategies are various: detrital feeders, herbivores, scavengers and suspension feeder, over 800 Species of amphipods are know worldwide.
These amphipods of the families Epimeriidae and Iphimediidae are among the prettiest, these living gems are predominantly red, and fades quicly with increasing depth. They are foud in the Southern Ocean and are tiny, just 2-4cm long.
At 1950 m Epimeria larsi, aka the pink gem holds the deepest known species record for the genus, and was collected from the northern Ross Sea slope.
- Photo: Top left: Epimeria rimicarinata; Top right: E. larsi; Middle row: E. schiaparelli (named after the photographer); Bottom right: Epimeria robusta. The bottom left image is of a closely related genus, Echiniphimedia, aptly named the ‘prickly’ amphipod. Credit: Stefano Schiaparelli (University of Genoa) and David Bowden (NIWA)/ IPY CAML voyage TAN0802.
- More NIWA
- more about Antarctic amphipods