There are places on our planet that are at firstthe look seems almost lifeless. These are places like permafrost zones, Antarctica or deserts. However, in these areas, life literally "boils". But there is another similar area on our planet - a giant dead zone located in the Pacific Ocean. For a long time it was believed that this part of the world’s ocean was practically not inhabited, but this was far from the case.
What is a dead zone in the Pacific
These remarkable waters are in the heartThe South Pacific circle, in the center of which there is the so-called oceanic pole of inaccessibility. Here is also located Point Nemo. This is the point with the greatest distance from any land. The point of Nemo is also known as the “cemetery of the spacecraft”, as by dumping the ships here, the risk of causing damage to nature or people is minimal.
Point Nemo. The nearest populated place is located at 3600 kilometers from it.
See also: Arsenic-breathing life forms found in the Pacific
Despite the fact that the oceanic pole of inaccessibility has been known to people for a long time, scientists have studied very little of its fauna. And for a long time this place was something like a “sea desert”.
Who lives in a huge dead zone
Not long ago, a group of German researchers fromMax Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology aboard FS Sonne traveled through this zone to explore who inhabits the mysterious waters. In total, scientists traveled 4,350 nautical miles (about 7,000 kilometers).
"To our surprise, we found a greatthe number of bacteria in the surface waters of the South Pacific. At the same time, they are much smaller when compared with other parts of the Atlantic, "- says one of the researchers, microbiologist Bernhard Fuchs. "This is probably the lowest number of microorganisms ever recorded in the surface waters of the ocean."
Among the microbes found by the team,dominated by 20 major species. One of the identified populations that has attracted the most attention of researchers is AEGEAN-169. Firstly, it turned out to be the most numerous, and secondly, these bacteria were found in surface waters. At the same time, previous studies allowed finding them only at a depth of 500 meters.
"This indicates an interesting feature of the bacteriato adapt. Microorganisms that used to live at great depths can now live in surface waters, adapting to temperature and ultraviolet exposure. ”Said one of the team members, microbiologist Greta Reinthies.
The obtained samples also confirmed thatThe oceanic inaccessibility pole is a unique habitat where organisms can adapt to extreme physical and chemical conditions. At the same time, remoteness and relative inaccessibility to humans makes these waters one of the cleanest in the world, which means that changes of species in them can be fixed in the most natural conditions without exposure from our civilization.
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