Riftia Symbionts

Deep Sea Thermal Vents

Who needs to go to Mars or anywhere else in the universe to discover new life forms when searching the nooks and crannies of our own deep oceans reveals truly bizarre life forms?

Deep below the ocean suface, where there is no light, whole ecosystems with dense animal life surround hydrothermal vents. These communities are suppported by bacteria, which create food from chemicals flowing out of volcanic vents. Some of these bacteria are free living, others live together with animals is a symbiotic relationship.

Tube Worm Symbionts