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Bringing the Animals of the Abyss to Life

:: Deep-sea plankton - A Selection of the Best
Plankton are the beautiful drifters of the open ocean and deep abyss, including deep-sea jellyfish, salps, comb jellies, pelagic worms, deep-sea copepods, amphipods, ostracods, and red deep-sea shimps.

The photos below are a select few from our Deep-sea plankton gallery - to view the complete collection please visit the Deep-sea plankton Gallery

Deep-sea pram bug
Deep-sea pram bug (Phronima sedentaria)
Snug as a bug in a rug - this pram bug is secure in its hollowed-out salp home. One curious feature, visible in this photograph, is that the rear two pairs of the pram bug's legs bend backwards, enabling the animal to hold itself in place within the salp.
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Portuguese Man of War
Portuguese Man of War (Physalia physalis)
This tiny Portuguese Man of War is early on its development. This is the Pacific form of the species, which tends to be smaller and bluer than the Atlantic form. They are known in New Zealand as 'bluebottles'.
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Oceanic salp
Oceanic salp (Salpa?)
A large 10 cm-long salp caught near the surface in the open ocean west of Central America. A close-up of the same animal showing the reproductive cycle of this species is also available on this website.
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Krill (Nyctiphanes australis)
The krill, Nyctiphanes australis, is abundant off New Zealanad, where it is an important prey item for many marine mammals, birds, fishes and invertebrates.
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Comb jelly
Comb jelly (Pleurobrachia pileus)
This remarkable photo shows a comb jelly (Pleurobrachia pileus) that has ingested bright yellow pine tree pollen blown offshore. The sticky yellow particles indicate the gut, and have also adhered to the combs.
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Pelagic worm
Pelagic Worm (Tomopteris sp.)
The pelagic worm, Tomopteris, loops the loop. These agile predatory worms live in midwater depths in the open ocean.
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View the complete collection in our Deep-sea plankton Gallery

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