MBARI midwater ecology cruise (August 2015)

Tintenfisch

Architeuthis
Staff member
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#1
Hi everyone! Back over the Monterey Submarine Canyon on MBARI's Western Flyer for the week. We are doing a mix of dives with the big ROV (Doc Ricketts) and a smaller ROV, trying out some new technology. I'm looking in particular for some of the more common deep-sea squid out here (Gonatus, Chiroteuthis, cranchiids) to collect samples for a project about understanding the chemistry and use of ink in deep-sea squids. We got a few nice animals today but my photographic technique is rusty so I don't have many good photos of them yet... but I did take a nice video of Taonius (cranchiids are surely one of the most extraordinary deep-sea groups in terms of appearance!). Bandwidth is limited so I will try to upload it tonight when there's less activity!

DSC_0610-1.jpg
 

tonmo

Titanites
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#5
Yes! Saw this on FB... love it. And so great that you sent him back!
Per your other post - total length about 4 cm / 1.5".
 

Tintenfisch

Architeuthis
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Moderator
#6
YOU GUYS YOU GUYS YOU GUYS. Had to keep this under wraps until MBARI released it on FB, but on Tuesday morning we saw this guy at 2.6km... Cirrothauma murrayi, a cirrate octopus with degenerate eyes (no lens, only a clear window at the front and a light-sensitive retina, no capability of forming an image--and embedded deeply in the head tissue). Note the weird suckers in the web shot; there are a few more "normal" suckers near the beak, then they become swollen and sort-of turnip-shaped, with teeny-tiny apertures. We this this one also had a hectocotylus, Arm IIR, where the suckers increased into two series and were different again. I have a few more photos to post but need to clean them up first.
 

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DWhatley

Cthulhu
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#7
With the eyes, filament thingys on the arms and weird suckers, do you suspect another detritus only feeder?
 

Tintenfisch

Architeuthis
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Moderator
#9
Another super cool octopus today--a bolitaenid, probably Japetella diaphana (Tree of Life seems to be down so I'll have to link to the taxa later). This guy had something I'd never seen before--it's full of iridocytes that make it shimmer and sparkle when they catch the light. You can see them in the funnel in this pic, and on the dorsal surface of the head. It also had something even stranger. The pupil appears to contract into a vertical slit (kind of like a cat, or a lizard), something I have not seen or heard of in any ceph before (but haven't researched thoroughly yet). This one was at about 700 m but we actually saw two on this cruise--the other was much larger and deeper. Unexpected and very, very cool!
 

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