basket star

The Basket Star is a bloodless creature that weighs 11 pounds and lives for about 35 years

Amazing pictures of Southern Ocean marine life captured by scientists working in the Antarctic were released today.  The inhabitants of the continent’s seas were captured as part of a study on biodiversity carried out by the British Antarctic Survey (BAS).


Images of the marine creatures, which were taken in the Bellingshausen Sea, West Antarctica, include ice fish, sea pigs and crustaceans.


Soft coral can live with much less light than hard coral, but is not suitable for reef-building

The underwater images also show giant sea spiders, rare rays and beautiful basket stars.

‘Few people realise just how rich in biodiversity the Southern Ocean is – even a single trawl can reveal a fascinating array of weird and wonderful creatures as would be seen on a coral reef,’ said BAS research cruise leader Dr David Barnes.

sea pig

The Sea Pig is a member of the sea cucumber family

‘These animals are potentially very good indicators of environmental change as many occur in the shallows, which are changing fast, but also in deeper water which will warm much less quickly.


The Antarctic icefish thriives in waters between -2C and 4C


The Skate is a slow grower, also slow to reproduce and has proven susceptible to overfishing


An amphipod sandhopper


The isopod crustacean is related to the prawn


Comb jellies are a type of jellyfish


up close and personal with an octopus


The featherstar dates back 300millions years


The translucent isopod crustacean

scale worm

The scale worm is a worm like any other, except scales allow it to swim in the chilly Antarctic waters

Via Daily Mail