Dinner Time On the Seafloor Below 12,00 Feet with Sea Cucumbers and Sea Spiders
While exploring the slopes of unnamed seamounts near Johnston Atoll we encountered some rare and exciting wildlife. Some of the stars of this compilation video are the semi-transparent sea cucumbers with their digestive tracts on full view to our control van team. Enjoy this glimpse of the sea floor that also includes a rather large sea spider predating a bamboo coral.
Finding a meal at the bottom of the ocean is never easy since without sunlight, photosynthesis is impossible. Instead, most animals (like these sea cucumbers) that reside this far down consume detritus from the surface waters as their primary source of food. Others are predators, like the sea spider, that will make a meal of the filter-feeders, thus creating a unique deep ocean food web.
Learn more about this expedition to explore the ocean floor in and around Johnston Atoll in the Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument funded by NOAA Ocean Exploration via the Ocean Exploration Cooperative Institute.
Johnston Atoll, one of the most isolated atolls in the world, is located in the central Pacific Ocean, between the Hawaiian Islands, the Line Islands, and the nation of Kiribati. Around this atoll, the Pacific Remote Island Marine National Monument (PRIMNM) was expanded in 2014 to protect the full 200 nautical mile perimeter of the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) encompassing many unexplored seafloor features.