Rare coral and 'new species' found in Irish waters

Rare coral and ‘new species’ found in Irish waters

A coral gardenImage copyright
Marine Institute

Image caption

A coral species kinds a vibrant backyard at 2000m beneath sea degree

Rare coral has been found in a deep sea analysis mission off the west coast of Ireland.

Scientists from the Marine Institute in Galway found a black coral beforehand undocumented in Irish waters.

The crew of marine specialists, who spent three weeks at sea, additionally noticed areas of potential sponge reef, beforehand solely recorded in Canadian waters.

Chief scientist David O’Sullivan mentioned the research helped perceive and defend Ireland’s marine biodiversity.

The new species have been captured on a excessive definition remotely operated car.

Corallium, which grows into large followers with a fragile porcelain-like skeleton, was seen twice throughout the SeaRover survey. The species of black coral caught on digital camera was totally different to others described thus far, and might show to be a wholly new species.

Image copyright
Marine Institution

Image caption

Corallium has by no means been recorded in Irish waters earlier than, however was noticed twice throughout the SeaRover cruise

“We made a couple of different finds and there were a couple of species that had never been seen in Irish waters before,” mentioned Mr O’Sullivan, from the Marine Institute.

“That’s to not say that they have not been there all alongside, however they have not been checked out by an skilled earlier than and really recognized what they have been.

“We have been actually excited to seek out that there was one species which does not seem to have been described by anybody earlier than, so it is a wholly new species.”


He added: “It was actually good to have specialists on board who might see the totally different species in real-time.

“This kind of research is important because it allows us to see what’s going on in our oceans and the ecological requirements for the species.”

The SeaRover survey is the second of three deliberate expeditions collectively funded by the Irish Government and the EU’s European Maritime and Fisheries Fund.

The specialists on-board have been all from the Marine Institute, National Parks and Wildlife Service, National University of Ireland Galway and Plymouth University.

Mr O’Sullivan mentioned the crew have been delighted with their findings, however the “hard work starts now” as they analyse the survey again in Galway.

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