bait in the wolf trap (petitfour) wrote in wtf_nature,
bait in the wolf trap

Undersea lake? What?

Ever find yourself sitting and watching Spongebob and wondering hey! If this show idea was created by an oceanographer, why is it that Spongebob and his friends can go hang out at the beach while under water?

No? Just me? Well anyway, fret no more! Because as it turns out...

This is a high salinity dump of water known as a brine pool, and it gives us some insight in to the notion that life on earth is far more adaptive and diverse than we ever imagined, especially in the sparsely explored depths of the ocean.

"Brine pools are large areas of brine on the ocean basin. These pools are concentrations of water having an extremely high salinity as compared to the surrounding ocean, caused by the motion of large salt deposits through salt tectonics. Methane is also in high concentration in these areas, providing energy by the process of chemosynthesis to creatures which live in the pool's vicinity. These creatures are often extremophiles."

Life is possible there because, "Cold seep activity often coincides with the location of a brine pool. Methane released by the seep is processed by bacteria, which have a symbiotic relationship with mussels and other lifeforms at the edge of the pool. This ecosystem is entirely dependent on chemical energy, and unlike almost all other life on Earth, has no reliance on energy from the sun."

I say it all the time in this community but seriously, nature is way too cool in that nothing, no weird geography or mess of chemicals or area at the mercy of harsh conditions ever goes to waste.

Tags: marine life, video
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