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Anyone know the ID of this sea spider by any chance? Brought up from about 300-400 metres in a fishing net in Japan.

 

Tony

 

300706642_fcebe79b99.jpg

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I have no idea but that is COOL !

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Hey Giles,

 

You should've seen the other stuff they brought up. All sorts of strange things that would fit right into a sci-fi movie. Unfortunately, most of the animals weren't in terrific shape.

 

Wish I could dive down that far to take a look...

 

Cheers,

 

Tony

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Hi Tony - I don't know what it is but I know a specialist who might. Do you have views of it from other angles? I know she'll want a close up of the head.

Cheers, Leslie

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Hi Leslie,

 

I have other shots, but all of the body. No close up of the head alone...wrong lens.

 

The net that the sea spider came up in was set at 300-400 metres in Suruga Bay off the west coast of Izu Peninsula, if that's of any help. Otherwise, I'm happy to send more images to your friend.

 

Absolutely fascinating critter.

 

Cheers,

 

Tony

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Tony, I've sent her your pic under the file name "sea spider 300-400m Surugu Bay Izu-Japan Tony Wu" so the info stays with the pic. If she needs more photos I'll let you know.

L

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Bonnie Bain's reply is below. I also asked her what parts she needs to see in an image to make an accurate id. Some of the shots she wants really aren't obtainable with live animals as you'd have to flip them over.

 

"I love looking at pictures of pycs (especially nice clear photos like the one you just sent). This one is probably Ascorhynchus japonicum Ives, 1891. This species is described as being the biggest Ascorhynchus from Japan (20 mm or so in size). I will get a pyc diagram for you, but in the meantime, in addition to the head shot, areas helpful for ID include a side view, a rear view (showing abdomen), a ventral view showing the ovigerous legs (or lack of, in some cases), and a good shot of a leg, including the propodus or foot. The head shot gives me the most information for a quick ID and the ovigerous legs help when the head shot doesn't provide enough information. Also, the ovigerous legs and the ventral view will usually identify the sex of the specimen."

 

If anyone wants to learn more about pycs you can go to Bonnie's website at www.invertebrates.us which has as large section on them.

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That is a cool critter...

 

Will this spider survive in shallower water or make its way back down to the Abyss.... just wondering what happens to these critters when they are hauled up from the depths..

 

M.

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That is a cool critter...

 

Will this spider survive in shallower water or make its way back down to the Abyss.... just wondering what happens to these critters when they are hauled up from the depths..

 

M.

 

If the pyc was undamaged it could survive in shallow water. I've no idea as to whether it would move down to it's normal habitat.

 

Most animals in trawls don't survive - even the ones tossed back. Tony will have to tell you about what happened in Izu to the bycatch. In my trawling experience the unwanted catch from research cruises is tossed over the side which basically means they're fish food. Many of the fish - especially from deep water - have expanded swim bladders from pressure change so they can't swim down while the crustaceans are usually too stressed from being hauled up to survive. Seabirds hang around the ships to get a free meal while big fish follow the boats. During my last cruise we had big ulua (Giant Trevally Caranx ignobilis) and sharks showing up for their morning snack whenever we hauled up baited lobster traps.

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Anyone know the ID of this sea spider by any chance? Brought up from about 300-400 metres in a fishing net in Japan.

 

Tony

 

I don't know anything about this sea spider, but it is really COOL, I'll echo everyone else! This thread is very interesting.

 

I've never seen a sea spider like this but once, while we were engaged in fish surveys, i.e., looking for new ledges, etc where game fish are gathering at Gray's Reef NMS off Georgia; anyway my buddy and I were doing an underwater search pattern for the "ledge" we were told was around there and then over the sand/muddy bottom I saw what must have been several hundred sea spiders!! They were not quite like this one, but it still was like underwater anachrophobia!! We lifted some up to get a better look cause they were everywhere (I hate to admit it but that is what happens when you are bored having not found "the ledge"..... :) ) My buddy told me she had a friend who was studying sea spiders and I thought, what a fascinating subject! I wonder if these were spawning or something? Or if that many are often found over mud bottoms at moderate depths offshore?

 

I wonder if Bonnie would tell us more about these critters? I will check out her site for sure.

 

Anyway Tony, Cool Critter!! I'd love to see more trawl stuff!!

 

Best, Carol

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Leslie,

 

Many, many thanks for contacting Bonnie. I'll look through my photos to see if I have anything else I can send her. Unfortunately, I wasn't thinking about ID shots at the time. Was mostly trying to figure out a good way to light the sea spider to maximize the "creepiness" factor. 20 mm is about how big it was.

 

Starbuck,

 

Most of the bycatch was dead, which is normal. The only "healthy" subjects were the sea spider and a few hagfish. There were many other less charismatic invertebrates which may have been alive, though it was hard to tell.

 

Here's one of the hagfish, which is also a very strange creature I haven't been able to identify yet. Don't have access to my collection of ID books as I'm still on the road.

 

300706664_3244321ca3.jpg

 

Carol,

 

Way cool. I'd love to see something like that. The fishermen in Japan are a bit touchy sometimes about having people with cameras around. I'll visit again as soon as I can, and see if they'll show me more. I tried explaining to them that it would be really nice if they can treat the bycatch a little more delicately, but deaf ears I'm afraid. They were nice enough to set aside a box of "junk" for us, but most of it was damaged.

 

Cheers,

 

Tony

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Hi Tony,

 

Surprisingly, the sea spider, not the same type, can also be found in Pulau Hantu. There was a photo taken by someone last year. Check out the link.

 

http://public.fotki.com/lovells19/jimmy/20...sea_spider.html

 

Thanks for the link. Very interesting. There seem to be many species of sea spider, over 1000 known species from what I can gather. They're all cool.

 

Cheers,

 

Tony

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For anyone who's interested, I got a confirmation from Japan on the sea spider as Ascorhynchus japonicum Ives (thanks Leslie!) and the hagfish as Eptatretus okinoseanus

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Here is the spiders lethal variant, called fascia bursterii

post-4706-1164985412_thumb.jpg

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Here is the spiders lethal variant, called fascia bursterii

 

:(:):)

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Here is the spiders lethal variant, called fascia bursterii

 

Nice one! :(

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