Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute
Press Room
09 June 2005

Images related to the MBARI news release
"Sinkers" provide missing piece in deep-sea puzzle

Note: These images may not be copied, reprinted, or used without explicit permission from MBARI. Members of the media needing higher-resolution versions should contact Kim Fulton-Bennett, kfb@mbari.org, 831-775-1835.


Image credit: (c) 2004 MBARI

This photograph, taken by the remotely operated vehicle Ventana, shows a larvacean's "house," which consists of two mucus filters. The outer filter can be up to a meter across and traps coarse particles. The inner filter (translucent butterfly-shaped object) traps fine particles. The larvacean itself is too small to be seen in this image.


Image credit: (c) 2004 MBARI

This photograph, taken by the remotely operated vehicle Tiburon, shows a larvacean's "house," which consists of two mucus filter. The outer filter can be up to a meter across and traps coarse particles. The inner filter (translucent butterfly-shaped object) traps fine particles. The larvacean itself is too small to be seen in this image.


Image credit: (c) 2000 MBARI

This photograph, taken by the remotely operated vehicle Tiburon, shows a larvacean's inner filter (the translucent butterfly-shaped object), embedded in an outer filter that removes coarse particles. The larvacean itself is too small to be seen in this image.


Image credit: (c) 2000 MBARI

This photograph, taken by MBARI's remotely operated vehicle Tiburon, shows a close-up view of a larvacean's inner filter. A larger large outer net filters out coarse particles. The larvacean itself is too small to be seen in this image.


Image credit: (c) 2004 MBARI

When a larvacean's mucus filters become clogged, the animal swims free. The abandoned outer filter then collapses like a deflated balloon and begins to sink. Such "sinkers" carry tiny animals and food particles rapidly toward the seafloor.


Image credit: (c) 1990 MBARI

When a larvacean's mucus filters become clogged, the animal swims free. The abandoned outer filter then collapses like a deflated balloon and begins to sink. Such "sinkers" carry tiny animals and food particles rapidly toward the seafloor.


Image credit: (c) 2002 MBARI

In order to tell how much carbon a sinking larvacean house (a "sinker") delivers to the deep seafloor, MBARI researchers needed to collect these fragile structures using special sampling chambers mounted on deep-diving remotely operated vehicles (ROVs). This photograph shows the "detritus sampler" on ROV Ventana being used to collect a sinker in Monterey Bay.


Image credit: (c) 2002 MBARI

In order to tell how much carbon a sinking larvacean house (a "sinker") delivers to the deep seafloor, MBARI researchers needed to collect these fragile structures using special sampling chambers mounted on deep-diving remotely operated vehicles (ROVs). This photograph shows the "detritus sampler" on ROV Tiburon being used to collect a sinker in Monterey Bay.

Last updated: Apr. 12, 2012