Thursday, May 18, 2006

Discover Ocean Creatures that Inhabit Hot Vents

From CSA Discovery Guides
Hydrothermal Vent Communities
(Released May 2006) by Carolyn Scearce

At hydrothermal vent sites, hot mineral rich water spews from the sea floor, and mixes with cold oceanic water. Vent chemistry provides the energy and raw materials with which microorganisms grow. These microorganisms form the basis of the food chain in which unexpectedly high organism densities and growth rates are observed. Unique communities are formed around vents, attracting unusual creatures such as red-plumed giant tube worms and massive clams, which cluster around the dark chimneys where vent fluids emerge.

The CSA Discovery Guides series includes articles in all disciplines, providing references to key scholarly articles as well as relevant Web resources. Other CSA Discovery Guides in the Natural Sciences.

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