Ocean Reefs in Waters off of Washington State

Surprising Beauty Discovered on Pacific Seafloor

By LiveScience Staff

26 June 2006

07:02 pm ET

“When you think of bright coral and colorful fish, you might conjure images of Hawaii or the Caribbean. If so, a newfound bed of deep-sea corals and other animal life found off the coast of Washington state will likely surprise you.

Researchers said an earlier survey had led them to suspect they might find a rich, unexplored ecosystem in the Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary. Today the NOAA-led project released several photographs returned by a remotely operated vehicle from 300 to 2,000 feet down. Among the most dramatic:

  • A red gorgonian coral branch supporting attachments of a whitish basket star, crinoids and several shark egg cases.
  • A brightly-colored sharpchin rockfish, possibly pregnant, resting next to a gorgonian soft coral tentatively identified as a Paragorgia species.
  • An incredibly delicate-looking, lone gorgonian soft coral tentatively identified as an Umbellula species.
  • Bright orange rosethorn and redbanded rockfish adjacent to the reef-building coral Lophelia pertusa and a giant cup coral.”

More full sized photos and the full article at LiveScience.com

EurekAlert has an article about Washington waters being one of only two places in the world where Glass Sponge reefs have been found.

One Response to Ocean Reefs in Waters off of Washington State

  1. Star Ocean says:

    Dave

    Interesting topic… I’m working in this industry myself and I don’t agree about this in 100%, but I added your page to my bookmarks and hope to see more interesting articles in the future

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