What was found and done durning the Deep Connections 2019?

  • Documented high-density communities of deep-sea corals and sponges on five dives and across a wide depth range (921-2,668 meters, ~3,022-8,753 feet). These included a high-density forest of bamboo corals at a depth of 1,100 meters (~3,609 feet) inside the Gully Canyon, a highly diverse and dense assemblage of deep-sea sponges at depths of 2,500-2,650 meters (~8,202-8,694 feet) on Retriever Seamount, as well as patches of high-density communities on Kinlan Canyon, Bear Seamount, and Veatch Canyon.
  • ¬†Collected 124 biological samples (35 primary and 89 associated taxa). Twenty-six of the primary biological samples represented range extensions, and several of these may be new species to science. The other biological samples were collected to support studies on connectivity and biogeographic patterns across the Atlantic Ocean, an important goal of the ASPIRE campaign.
  • Conducted a total of 12 remotely operated vehicle (ROV) dives in deep waters off the U.S. and Canadian Atlantic continental margin for a total dive time of 85 hours, 58 minutes and a total on-bottom time of 54 hours, 49 minutes. Collectively, these dives explored seafloor habitats at depths between 306 and 2,668 meters (~1,004-8,753 feet) over a linear distance of 5.996 kilometers (~3.7 miles). Hundreds of different species of animals were documented during these dives. Observations of particular note included several species that are potentially new to science, numerous range extensions, and new behaviors.
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