Deep Sea Cold Seep

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The complex geology of the continental slope produces some of the weirdest features on our planet. 2000 feet down in the midst of the barren sea floor, the Johnson-Sea-Link submarine finds something that seems to upturn the laws of physics. A pond of water with ripples on its surface.

A cold seep is an area of the ocean floor where hydrogen sulphide, methane and other hydrocarbon-rich fluid seepage occurs, often in the form of a brine pool. Cold does not mean that the temperature of the seepage is lower than that of the surrounding sea water. On the contrary, its temperature is often slightly higher. Cold seeps constitute a biome supporting several endemic species.

Perhaps the best evidence that life can flourish at extreme depths comes from one of the strangest creatures of all, Lamellibrachia luymesi. This tube worm can reach lengths of over 10 feet, scientists marvel at their size, and are astonished when they figure out their age.

Clip taken from the Naked Science documentary “The Deep”.

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