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Cold-Water Coral Distributions in the Drake Passage Area from Towed Camera Observations – Initial Interpretations

Figure 3

Mosaics of representative images from each of the towed camera surveys.

A single TowCam image covers approximately a 2.5×1.5 meter area of seafloor; these mosaicks are made up of 2–4 images. A, EL-1; Image shows the predominantly fine-grained sediment environment of EL1, with occasional drop stones (A) covered in anthozoans (anemones). In the sediment the Alcyonoacean Anthomastus bathyproctus can be seen (red circle above rock, B) and numerous brittle stars, as well as a holothurian (purple below rock, C). B, EL-2; Image shows predominately sediment environment of EL2 with the primnoid octocoral Thouarella sp. (yellow bottlebrush, A) present on small rock, and numerous red shrimp (B). C, SFZ; Image shows predominately gravel bottom habitat with patches of sediment, dominated by brittle stars (A), large sponges (white fans, B) and primnoa octocorals (yellow bottlebrushes, C). D, INT-1; Image shows gravel bottom habitat with exposed bedrock in places. Bottom fauna is dominated by sponges (white/brown fans, A), stylasterids (bright white fans, B) and primnoa octocorals (yellow bottlebrushes, C). E, INT-2; Image shows primarily bedrock environment with patches of sediment and gravel. Bottom fauna shows large sponges (white/brown fans and tubes, A) and stylasterids (white fans, B). F, SARS; Images shows gravel bottom dominated by anemones (red circles, A) and sponges (yellow/white/brown tubes and fans, B).

Figure 3