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Old 29-03-2010, 22:07   #1
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Hitchhiking Deep Sea Crustacean

Maybe this should go in the provisioning / cooking part of the forum. These pics are of a crazy critter that hitched a ride on top of a oil rig's Remotely Operated vehicle (ROV) which was working on a well head at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico in the last few days. The ROV came up from 8500 ft. The critter was DOA as the pressure where it was stalking its prey is 3800 psi. It was 30 inches long.

I have spent some valuable work time researching this bugger and I think I know what it is. If I am correct it was probably one of the largest specimens ever found. I could be wrong, though. Has been known to happen VERY occasionally.

OK every one - suggestions needed as to the name of this, soon to be mornayed crustacean?

Tomorrow I will tell you what I think it is.
PS Come on, Gord, you probably have the operating manual for this critter in your database
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Old 30-03-2010, 04:09   #2
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Hmm searching memory banks, came up with one in Bahamas years back ________ prawn
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Old 30-03-2010, 04:21   #3
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Looks like a Bathynomus giganteus. At 30" you may just have a record-breaking catch.
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Old 30-03-2010, 05:20   #4
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Now I know where they got the face for the critter in the "Predator" movies.
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Old 30-03-2010, 05:31   #5
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Hmm searching memory banks, came up with one in Bahamas years back ________ prawn
Nope - no prize. It is not a prawn and before you guess again, I will give you guys a hint. It is also NOT a member of the Bathylasquidae subspecies of the Stomatopods because, as you are all probably aware, these have stalked eyes while this beastie has recessed non-stalked eyes (check out the optics in the head shot).

These photos are not faked or photo shopped. I don't think my fellow oil workers have the time for photo shopping as they work 12 hour shifts, 7 days per week when they are on site. It was brought up on Seadrill Company's West Sirius rig which if you google you will find is working in the G of M at the moment.

Notice Ol' Crusties size compared to the handles of the ROV controls. As I said it was 30 inches long.

GUESS AGAIN
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Old 30-03-2010, 05:38   #6
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Hud nailed it! Did you know the common Pill bug in your basement is a crustacean? They must keep their gills wet to breath...
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Old 30-03-2010, 07:07   #7
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Looks like a Bathynomus giganteus. At 30" you may just have a record-breaking catch.
Geez, Hud - you get the prize. You guys are amazing. Only took about three hours for someone to come up with the answer.

Anyway, for all you other invertebrate zoology fresh wo/men, they are OBVIOUSLY pictures of a crustacean from the Isopodia genus, in particular "a specimen of the largest ocean species, Bathynomus giganteus which is reported to grow to a maximum length of 19.7 in (50 cm). Isopods lack the carapace of many other crustaceans, instead having a cephalic shield. All but the parasitic forms have at least 14 walking legs (which this one has)—two on each of the seven somites that make up the pereon.

Marine isopods feed primarily on algae, diatoms, and other vegetation in addition to wood and vegetative detritus. In fact one third of their diet may be their own faeces! A few, such as Cirolana species, eat the decaying flesh of dead animals, especially fishes. Predators of these marine species are primarily fishes. "
(from http://www.answers.com/topic/isopoda-1)

Probably took me that long to do my own research after I got the photos today. At this evening's supervisors' meeting where we have to report on what out team had accomplished today, I proudly announced that I had been busy researching "Crustacean Taxonomy". The Captain said that was probably better than looking for porn. LOL

Now I have to think up a prize for Hud.
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Old 30-03-2010, 07:51   #8
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In fact one third of their diet may be their own faeces!

Still tastes like lobster though, you wanna bbq it before it goes off I reckon
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Old 30-03-2010, 07:56   #9
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before you guys eat that thing you ought to photograph it alongside a ruler, preferably one with a metric scale.

if it really measures out at 30 inches, this specimen is more than twice the maximum size listed in most field guides.
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Old 30-03-2010, 08:24   #10
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Giant isopods, like Bathynomus Giganteus, are of little interest to most commercial fisheries; owing to the typical paucity of catches, and because ensnared isopods are usually scavenged beyond marketability before they are recovered.
However, in Northern Taiwan and other areas, they are not uncommon at seaside restaurants, served boiled and bisected with a clean lateral slice. The white meat, not dissimilar to crab or lobster in texture, is then easily removed.

See also “Simple Summer Recipes for Dead Seafloor Carrion”
Scavenger | Deep Sea News
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Old 30-03-2010, 13:29   #11
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...Now I have to think up a prize for Hud.
How about a slice of that tasty isopod, as you suggested earlier, in a Mornay sauce?
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Old 30-03-2010, 13:34   #12
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That "thing" is scarier then the thing that popped out of that guy's chest in Alien! And you want to EAT it? Now I know why cruisers carry shotguns! Heh heh...trying to start gun thread drift...
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Old 30-03-2010, 16:33   #13
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To me that looks like what a gaint cockroach that lives in the sea would look like! And I might feed IT so that it wasn't mad at me, but don't think I would say out loud that I was going to eat it!

And I thought lobsters looked like something NOT to eat!
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Old 30-03-2010, 18:08   #14
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look more closely, my friend

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To me that looks like what a gaint cockroach that lives in the sea would look like!
Isopods have seven pairs of legs. A cockroach, being an insect, only has three.

And cockroach legs are always hairy, regardless of species.

(If it's any consolation, there's an isopod down in Baja that my students insist on calling a "rock roach." I have no idea where they picked up this habit.)
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Old 30-03-2010, 19:11   #15
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See also “Simple Summer Recipes for Dead Seafloor Carrion”
Scavenger | Deep Sea News
Trust Gord to be hanging out on a site called "Deep Sea News" Here is the link to the full article on B. giganteus
From The Desk of Zelnio: Bathynomus giganteus | Deep Sea News

I emailed the site with those photos. I will try and get a contact on the Sirius rig and find out what happened to this specimen. Hopefully they didn't chuck it over the side.

HUD, how about a week on a 47 ft catamaran in the Kimberleys in August as your prize? You will need to get to Darwin first.
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