Agriculture
Watering the Air
Where Have All the Bees Gone?
Vitamin D-licious Mushrooms
Amphibians
Salamanders and Newts
Newts
Toads
Animals
Mating Slows Down Prairie Dogs
A Tongue and a Half
Walks on the Wild Side
Behavior
Two monkeys see a more colorful world
A Light Delay
Swine flu goes global
Birds
Falcons
Songbirds
Quails
Chemistry and Materials
Cold, colder and coldest ice
Fog Buster
Batteries built by Viruses
Computers
Hubble trouble doubled
Troubles with Hubble
Galaxies on the go
Dinosaurs and Fossils
Some Dinos Dined on Grass
Hall of Dinos
Tiny Pterodactyl
E Learning Jamaica
E Learning in Jamaica WIN PRIZES and try our Fun Animated Games
Results of GSAT are in schools this week
2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
Earth
Easy Ways to Conserve Water
Groundwater and the Water Cycle
Farms sprout in cities
Environment
A 'Book' on Every Living Thing
Easy Ways to Conserve Water
Pollution Detective
Finding the Past
Writing on eggshells
Your inner Neandertal
Decoding a Beverage Jar
Fish
Pygmy Sharks
Electric Eel
Seahorses
Food and Nutrition
The mercury in that tuna
Food for Life
Chew for Health
GSAT English Rules
Finding Subjects and Verbs
Subject and Verb Agreement
Whoever vs. Whomever
GSAT Exam Preparation Jamaica
March 21-22, 2013: Over 43,000 students will take the GSAT Exam
The Annual GSAT Scholarships
GSAT Scholarship
GSAT Exams Jamaica Scholarships
Access denied - Disabled boy aces GSAT
42,000 students will sit for the GSAT Exam in two weeks
GSAT Scholarship
GSAT Mathematics
It's a Math World for Animals
Play for Science
Deep-space dancers
Human Body
Smiles Turn Away Colds
A Fix for Injured Knees
A New Touch
Invertebrates
Giant Squid
Arachnids
Beetles
Mammals
Wombats
Tigers
St. Bernards
Parents
What Not to Say to Emerging Readers
The Surprising Meaning and Benefits of Nursery Rhymes
How children learn
Physics
Dreams of Floating in Space
Speedy stars
Black Hole Journey
Plants
Sweet, Sticky Science
Making the most of a meal
A Change in Leaf Color
Reptiles
Caimans
Sea Turtles
Snapping Turtles
Space and Astronomy
World of Three Suns
Pluto, plutoid: What's in a name?
Unveiling Titan
Technology and Engineering
Are Propellers Fin-ished?
Model Plane Flies the Atlantic
Squeezing Oil from Old Wells
The Parts of Speech
Adjectives and Adverbs
What is a Noun
Problems with Prepositions
Transportation
Tinkering With the Basic Bike
Reach for the Sky
Flying the Hyper Skies
Weather
The solar system's biggest junkyard
Catching Some Rays
In Antarctica watch the heat (and your step)
Add your Article

A Fallout Feast for Crabs

 

Many people dream of living by the sea. There, they could relax or nod off to the soothing sounds of waves sweeping into shore. Some crabs endure tougher surroundings. In shallow waters off the coast of an island in Taiwan, the small crustaceans flock to vents that spew a toxic soup.
 Now, researchers say they've found an explanation for this mysterious behavior. The hearty crabs are tapping in to a surprisingly rich food source. Scientists have given lots of attention to hydrothermal vents, which spit out sulfur and other toxic chemicals from beneath the ocean. Lots of strange creatures grow around these vents, including tubeworms, clams, and blind crabs. Such environments may also hold the secret to the origins of life on earth. It turns out that vents can occur in shallow waters, too.

Just a few years ago, scientists started studying shallow vents off Kueishan Island, in northeastern Taiwan, that are only 8 to 20 meters deep. It's possible to scuba dive to such shallow depths, but the vents are very dangerous. The water that comes out of them is extremely hot, and they spit out sulfur, which is toxic. During a dive, a researcher from Academia Sinica in Taipei discovered that, at certain times, thousands of brown crabs came out of hiding and swarmed around the vents.

 When he told his coworkers about what he had seen, they wondered how there could be enough food for so many crabs. The researchers noticed that the crabs swarmed at certain points in the cycle of tides and currents. At  these times, the water was relatively calm, and the toxic soup spewing out of a vent rose straight up in the water. At other times of the day, the currents pushed this toxic plume sideways.
To explain the phenomenon, the scientists propose that the plumes kill lots of tiny creatures, called plankton, in the water above. Crabs can then come out to feast on the carnage. During some dives, the diver even observed a "snow" of small fish and other creatures after plume explosions. If you're like me, you still might prefer the beach to a crevice near a toxic plume for your fantasy home. If you were a little crab, though, the plume might sound like a fabulous place to live—and feast.—E. Sohn

 A Fallout Feast for Crabs
A Fallout Feast for Crabs








Designed and Powered by HBJamaica.com™