Researchers have discovered a new type of Yeti crab family known as Kiwa Tyleri. The new species is white, hairy and blind and like the other marine creatures of its kind it lives on the ocean floor near the thermal vents where hot water jets into the sea. This newly discovered species is the only one which lives in the Southern Ocean, namely in the east Scotia Rdige, between Antarctica and South America.
This deep-sea creature was photographed in 2010 for the first time. The ROV (remotely operated submersible vehicle) which took the photos also vacuumed up a few species which lived beneath 2.600 meters (8.500 feet) under the icy surface of the Southern Ocean. So far there are three species of Yeti crabs which are known by scientists. More details about Kiwa tyleri’s features are described in the journal PLOS ONE.
According to the lead author of the study, Sven Thatje, who is an associate professor at the University of Southampton in England the newly-discovered species of Yeti crab has a hairy body and a sharp white coloring. This is a result of the species’ adaptation to its own habitat. The thermal envelope where the crab lives has only a few square meters and the temperature is just right.
The crab’s tiny habitat contains black smokers. They are vents similar to chimneys which gush dark water of about 720 degrees Fahrenheit. Their habitat is so small because the water around the scorching vents is very cold even though the temperature in their habitat is warm and cozy.
The name of the species represents an homage to the renowned scientists Paul Tyler who invented deep-sea exploration. In the first place the creature was supposed to be called the Hoff crab. That is because the hairy chest of the Yeti crab reminded the research team of David Hasselhoff. Although this was not kept as a name it still remained as a nickname.
The hair on their chest which is a distinctive feature is scientifically called setae and it functions as a bacteria magnet. The hair is like the crabs’ own garden where they grow bacteria, their favorite food.
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