How Did Mussels Colonize Deep Sea?

What do deep sea mussels eat?

Deep – sea mussels can also feed by filtering organisms out of seawater using their gills, like other mussels do, but deep – sea mussels actually get most of their nutrition from their symbionts, either by using the molecules produced by the bacteria, by digesting the symbiotic bacteria themselves, or both.

How do deep sea vents survive?

‘ The food chain at these ocean oases relies on a core process called chemosynthesis, which is carried out by bacteria. This is similar to photosynthesis used by plants on land, but instead of using light energy from the Sun, the bacteria use chemicals drawn from the vent fluid.

Where are the mussels symbiotic bacteria found?

Hydrothermal vents in the deep sea are fascinating and rich habitats. Mussels, for example, thrive in this seemingly hostile environment, nourished by symbiotic bacteria inside their gills.

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How do organisms live in hydrothermal vents?

Organisms that live around hydrothermal vents don’t rely on sunlight and photosynthesis. Instead, bacteria and archaea use a process called chemosynthesis to convert minerals and other chemicals in the water into energy.

What eats the Zoarcid fish?

The vent ecosystem’s top predators are species such as octopus and Zoarcids, two-foot long fish that eat everything from tubeworms to crabs.

What organism is living inside of the giant tube worm?

This worm, called Riftia pachyptila, is an unusual animal because it has no mouth or digestive tract and no apparent way to eat! Instead of eating food like other animals, Riftia allows bacteria to live inside of it and provide its food.

Why do hydrothermal vents die?

They become inactive when seafloor-spreading moves them away from the rising magma or when they become clogged. Some vent fields may remain active for 10,000 years, but individual vents are much shorter-lived.

How did deep sea vents create life?

Summary: By creating protocells in hot, alkaline seawater, a research team has added to evidence that the origin of life could have been in deep – sea hydrothermal vents rather than shallow pools.

What is the source of energy for the life in deep ocean trenches where sunlight does not reach?

Answer: Instead of sunlight, vent life relies on hydrogen sulfide – more commonly known as rotten egg gas and toxic to most land-based life. In a process called chemosynthesis, specialized bacteria create energy from the hydrogen sulfide present in the mineral-rich water pouring out of the vents.

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Do mussels eat bacteria?

Diet: Mussels filter their food out of the water. They eat algae, bacteria, and other small, organic particles filtered from the water column. Life history: The larvae of these mussels are parasites on the gills and fins of freshwater fishes, including darters, minnows and bass.

Do mussels do chemosynthesis?

Despite the absence of light-driven primary production in these deep-sea ecosystems, mussels succeed reaching high biomasses in these harsh conditions thanks to chemosynthetic, carbon-fixing bacterial symbionts located in their gill tissue.

What does chemosynthesis produce?

During chemosynthesis, bacteria living on the sea floor or within animals use energy stored in the chemical bonds of hydrogen sulfide and methane to make glucose from water and carbon dioxide (dissolved in sea water). Pure sulfur and sulfur compounds are produced as by-products.

How are deep sea vents teeming with life?

Hydrothermal vents support unique ecosystems and their communities of organisms in the deep ocean. They help regulate ocean chemistry and circulation. They also provide a laboratory in which scientists can study changes to the ocean and how life on Earth could have begun.

How hot are deep sea vents?

Seawater in hydrothermal vents may reach temperatures of over 700° Fahrenheit. Hot seawater in hydrothermal vents does not boil because of the extreme pressure at the depths where the vents are formed.

How old are hydrothermal vents?

Many scientists think life got its start around 3.7 billion years ago in deep-sea hydrothermal vents.

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