Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Scientists discover new species of goby fish

JULY 19, 2015

by Shayne Jacopian

As part of the Smithsonian Institution’s Deep Reef Observation Project (DROP), Doctors Carole Baldwin and Ross Robertson have discovered a new variety of goby fish that is smaller, has unique coloration, and lives at a deeper habitat (70-80m) in the southern Caribbean. This new species was named Coryphopterus curasub, after the Curasub submersible that enabled their deep-reef research.

Here, check out the picture provided by the researchers:

While the marine life of shallow Caribbean coral reefs has been studied for over 150 years, studying environments far deeper wasn’t possible until the advent of manned submersibles that can be taken 300 meters under the sea.

Still, the habitats just below shallow coral reefs goes largely ignored.

"Deep reefs are diverse ecosystems in tropical seas that science has largely missed," said Dr. Baldwin. "Too deep to access using SCUBA gear and too shallow to be of much interest to deep-diving submersibles capable of descending thousands of meters."

"How incomplete is our picture of tropical reef biodiversity if so little attention has been devoted to depths just below those home to shallow coral reefs? We don't know," she said.

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