'Headless chicken monster’ discovered deep in the Southern Ocean

'Headless chicken monster’ discovered deep in the Southern Ocean

'Headless chicken monster’ discovered deep in the Southern Ocean

Data collected from the Australian cameras are being presented at this week's annual CCAMLR meeting, where commissioner Gillian Slocum hopes to make headway on pressing issues facing the Southern Ocean, like biodiversity conservation, climate change, and science-based fisheries management.

The creature, which has only been filmed before in the Gulf of Mexico, was discovered in 3km of water using an underwater camera system developed for commercial long-line fishing by the Australian Antarctic Division.

Some people have welcomed their new "headless chicken monster" master. Sea cucumbers are an important part of the marine ecosystem - they're sometimes referred to as the vacuum cleaners of the sea - but some are on the brink of extinction as the result of overfishing.

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"The housing that protects the camera and electronics is created to attach to tooth fish longlines in the Southern Ocean, so it needs to be extremely durable".

Researchers are excited to have caught it on underwater camera for the first time in the Southern Ocean off Antarctica. The creature is semi-transparent and its intestines can be seen through its body, especially soon after feeding time.

The sea cucumber feeds by touching down on the seafloor, eating with its tentacles before shooting back up into the water. It has only been caught on film once before, previous year in the Gulf of Mexico.

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"Including commercially sought-after species, the harvesting of which must be carefully managed for future generations".

This sea cucumber rarely lives above 1,000m below sea level. They can swim if they want to, and use fin-like structures to escape predators or lift off the ocean floor.

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