Nav: Home

Deep-diving technology finds little filter feeder has giant carbon cycling impact

May 03, 2017

Deep-diving Technology Finds Little Filter Feeder Has Giant Carbon Cycling Impact: Using a novel deep-sea technology, scientists have measured for the first time how a species of zooplankton called giant larvaceans contributes to the transfer of atmospheric carbon to the deep ocean. Data from the instrument DeepPIV revealed that giant larvaceans filter carbon particles at higher rates than any other zooplankton filter feeder. The technology may also be used for more accurate measurements of carbon removal by other deep-water organisms, an essential parameter for modeling oceanic ecosystems. Giant larvaceans, which are approximately pinky finger-sized plankton, live in the upper 400 meters of the ocean and build filtering "houses" so fragile that they cannot be analyzed in a lab. As giant larvaceans beat their tails, they propel particles from the water into these mucus houses for digestion. What's more, when the larvaceans discard their old, nutrient-rich houses, these structures sink to the sea floor, a significant contribution to moving organic materials into deeper water. Until now, scientists have only been able to estimate giant larvacean filtration rates based off the rates of other zooplankton. To measure their contribution more directly, Kakani Katija and colleagues launched DeepPIV, which deployed from a remotely operated vehicle and visualized fluid motion, in Monterey Bay, California. Katija et al. observed giant larvaceans and other zooplankton in the genus Bathochordaeus and collected 24 flow measurements. They found that one blue-tailed species of giant larvaceans had a filtration rate higher than the previously reported record-holding plankton, salps. By combining filtration rates with data on larvacean abundance, Katija et al. calculated the zooplankton could filter their 200 meter principal depth range in Monterey Bay in 13 days. As a next step, the scientists hope to compare the filtering rates at this site to areas around the world that are home to giant larvaceans.
-end-


American Association for the Advancement of Science

Related Zooplankton Articles:

Parasitic fungi keep harmful blue-green algae in check
When a lake is covered with green scums during a warm summer, cyanobacteria -- often called blue-green algae -- are usually involved.
You are what you eat is as important for fish as it is for people
There is truth in the saying 'you are what you eat'; even more so if you are a salmon or herring swimming off the British Columbia coast, a recent University of British Columbia study discovered.
Arctic light pollution affects fish, zooplankton up to 200 metres deep
If artificial light shines into the Arctic Ocean during the polar night, does it matter?
Scientists create model to predict multipathogen epidemics
In one of the first studies of its kind, bioscientists from Rice University and the University of Michigan have shown how to use the interactions between pathogens in individual hosts to predict the severity of multipathogen epidemics.
The paradox of dormancy: Why sleep when you can eat?
Why do predators sometimes lay dormant eggs -- eggs which are hardy, but take a long time to hatch, and are expensive to produce?
Microbes from humics lakes produced omega-3 fatty acids from micropla
The environmental fate of microplastics has been difficult to trace.
Siberian blue lakes and their inhabitants
There are picturesque but poorly studied blue lakes situated in Western Siberia.
For some corals, meals can come with a side of microplastics
A new experiment by the University of Washington has found that some corals are more likely to eat microplastics when they are consuming other food, yet microplastics alone are undesirable.
Fishery in Lake Shinji, Japan, collapsed 1 year after neonicotinoid use
Neonicotinoid pesticide use may have caused the abrupt collapse of two commercial fisheries on Lake Shinji, Japan, in 1993, according to a new study.
Fifty years later, DDT lingers in lake ecosystems
To control pest outbreaks, airplanes sprayed more than 6,280 tons of dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) onto forests in New Brunswick, Canada, between 1952 and 1968, according to Environment Canada.
More Zooplankton News and Zooplankton Current Events

Trending Science News

Current Coronavirus (COVID-19) News

Top Science Podcasts

We have hand picked the top science podcasts of 2020.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Listen Again: The Power Of Spaces
How do spaces shape the human experience? In what ways do our rooms, homes, and buildings give us meaning and purpose? This hour, TED speakers explore the power of the spaces we make and inhabit. Guests include architect Michael Murphy, musician David Byrne, artist Es Devlin, and architect Siamak Hariri.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#576 Science Communication in Creative Places
When you think of science communication, you might think of TED talks or museum talks or video talks, or... people giving lectures. It's a lot of people talking. But there's more to sci comm than that. This week host Bethany Brookshire talks to three people who have looked at science communication in places you might not expect it. We'll speak with Mauna Dasari, a graduate student at Notre Dame, about making mammals into a March Madness match. We'll talk with Sarah Garner, director of the Pathologists Assistant Program at Tulane University School of Medicine, who takes pathology instruction out of...
Now Playing: Radiolab

What If?
There's plenty of speculation about what Donald Trump might do in the wake of the election. Would he dispute the results if he loses? Would he simply refuse to leave office, or even try to use the military to maintain control? Last summer, Rosa Brooks got together a team of experts and political operatives from both sides of the aisle to ask a slightly different question. Rather than arguing about whether he'd do those things, they dug into what exactly would happen if he did. Part war game part choose your own adventure, Rosa's Transition Integrity Project doesn't give us any predictions, and it isn't a referendum on Trump. Instead, it's a deeply illuminating stress test on our laws, our institutions, and on the commitment to democracy written into the constitution. This episode was reported by Bethel Habte, with help from Tracie Hunte, and produced by Bethel Habte. Jeremy Bloom provided original music. Support Radiolab by becoming a member today at Radiolab.org/donate.     You can read The Transition Integrity Project's report here.