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Here we see a chirostylid crab hanging onto the end of a large bamboo coral colony at the edge of the Coral Garden. Most of our sampling at the Coral Garden is done photographically with still images, either up close with the macrocamera or downlooking images that we compile into photomosaics. Here we are taking a small physical sample using Jason’s manipulator. We will provide sub-samples of this one small piece of the coral to our collaborators for taxonomy and genetic samples so they can tell us what species it is and what it is related to. We will also take tissue and skeleton samples for stable isotope analyses so we can find out more about how the coral grows and what it is feeding on. Although we displaced one of these little crabs during this collection, it will almost surely find a new bamboo coral colony to call home. Video/Audio courtesy of Erik Cordes, Harvard University, Expedition to the Deep Slope 2007, NOAA-OE.

 

Related Links

Expedition to the Deep Slope 2007

Expedition to the Deep Slope 2007: June 24 Log

NOAA Ocean Explorer Gallery