by Dylan Hankins
The ocean depths are one of the harshest environments in the world. Low temperatures, extreme pressure, and complete darkness make it very hard for life to thrive. But as Dr. Ian Malcom once said, “Life finds a way”
- Very cold and dark environment
- Very little life
- Volcanoes provide heat, food, and light
- Forced crazy adaptions
- Have remained the same for millions of years
What I learned
At nearly 20,000 feet down, the Ocean Basin is a desert only completely void of life. At these depths, the temperature is just above freezing, with an average temperature of just 4॰C and pressure of around 380 times normal atmospheric pressure, it is almost impossible for life to survive.
The organisms of the ocean floor have evolved some unique adaptations in order to survive their environment. Most of the life consists of invertebrates such as crustaceans, cephalopods, and Mollusca.
Source of Life:
With such extreme conditions, life is only able to form thanks to cracks in the ocean floor, known as midocean ridges. These ridges spew out molten hot rocks and other mineral that bring the water temperature up to high enough temperatures to allow for organisms to live. These volcanoes (above) also provide food, as many organism eat the raw minerals that are contained within the plumes of smoke.
Example of Life
This is the Yeti Crab (Kiwa hirsuta). It has evolved long yellow strands of hair around its legs and arms. Scientists think that this is more used in order to catch more minerals rath then to stay warm, but there is evidence to show that they do provide some insolation. Due to the darkness, it also is completely blind as there is no need to see.
The bottom of the ocean has remained untouched and unharmed by the troubles of the main world for millennia. Through amazing adaptions and against incredible odds, these creatures have preserved. There are many questions scientists still have to uncover and many secrets still left to find, but who knows what else is awaiting discovery at the bottom of the sea.