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Images related to the MBARI news release
Nurseries in the deep sea
                                     Sept. 3, 2003

Note: These images may not be copied, reprinted, or used without explicit permission from MBARI. Members of the media needing higher-resolution versions should fill out our online image request form or contact Kim Fulton-Bennett,, 831-775-1835.

Photo copyright 2002 MBARI

Three octopus (Graneledone sp.) brood their eggs on a rock outcrop along the Mendocino Escarpment, offshore of Northern California. The octopus are in a typical brooding position, with their heads down and arms curled outward. Their eggs are hidden underneath their bodies, which are about 16 cm (6 inches) across. Also on the rock are a deep-sea crab and several types of sea anemones. This photograph suggests some of the abundance and diversity of marine life found around the undersea nursery areas along the Gorda Escarpment off Northern California.

Note: This image (along with most others on this page) is a frame grab from video captured during a dive by MBARI's remotely operated vehicle (ROV) Tiburon.

Photo copyright 2002  M

blob sculpin (Psychrolutes phrictus) peers over the edge of a boulder at the ROV Tiburon. This fish is guarding its eggs (which you can see on a rock in the background) along the Gorda Escarpment, off Northern California. Blob sculpin commonly grow to 60 cm (2 feet) in length. The animals on the foreground rock are brisingid sea stars (with the feathery arms) and sea anemones.

Photo copyright 2002  M

Three blob sculpin (Psychrolutes phrictus) attend nests of pinkish eggs on the sea bottom along the Mendocino Ridge (the fish on the left has a nest just off the left side of the photo). Unlike the surrounding rocks, the fish eggs are clear of sediment, which suggests that the parent fish may keep them clean by fanning them with their fins.

Photo copyright 2001  M

Face-on view of a blob sculpin (Psychrolutes phrictus), staring down the camera. These flabby, tadpole-shaped fish grow to about 60 cm (2 feet) in length.

Photo copyright 2002  M

Close-up view of a blob sculpin (Psychrolutes phrictus) swimming just above the sea floor.