Researchers recover the trap after it landed on the bottom of the Mariana Trench. Credit: UW News
Researchers recover the trap after it landed on the bottom of the Mariana Trench. Credit: UW News

The deepest living fish in the world

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Eight thousand meters below sea level, swims the world’s deepest living fish.

Marine biologists caught it in the Mariana Trench. This lies at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean, between Japan and the Philippines, and is the deepest part of the oceans, at almost 11,000 meters deep.

We might imagine that life is hard and lonely down there, but not at all! Living beings have adapted well to life in the perfect darkness, which teems with activity.

The newly-discovered fish is about 20 centimeters long and has no scales. Her skin is transparent, so you can see through to her the internal organs and even the shrimp she ate.

Najgloblje živeča riba. Foto: Mackenzie Gerringer/University of Washington

Credit: Mackenzie Gerringer/University of Washington

Researchers have found a lot of these fish in the depths of the Pacific Ocean, and thus believe that this type is well adapted to its living environment.

»In such depths, fish are not threatened by predators,« says researcher Thomas Linley of the University of Newcastle, England. »It’s literally raining food down at the bottom, so the fish are well-fed.«

Scientists do not yet know exactly how animals can withstand the immense pressure that is in such deep waters. For every ten meters of depth, the pressure is increased by one bar. At a depth of eight thousand meters, the pressure is so high it’s as if an elephant was standing on our thumb.

 

Glossary

Predators are animals that catch and feed on other animals.

bar is a unit of measurement for pressure. The normal air pressure is approximately 1 bar.

 

Points to consider

  1. Can you name some more deep sea animals?
  2. How do animals adjust to very hot or cold environment?
  3. What is the air pressure on the of a very high mountains, such Mount Everest?

***

English translation courtesy of JL Flanner, Total Slovenia News, an English language website with news from and about Slovenia.

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Katja • 29. 12. 2017


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