VIMS

Antarctic Zooplankton

View the videos below to better appreciate the wild beauty of some of the many species of zooplankton collected and studied by VIMS scientists involved in the NSF-funded Palmer Antarctica Long-Term Ecological Research program (PAL-LTER).

Clione limacina

Pteropods (the “P” is silent) are free-swimming snails common in ocean waters around Antarctica. {em}Clione limacina{/em} is a predatory pteropod that has completely lost its shell. In an astonishing evolutionary twist, its main prey is the shelled pteropod {em}Limacina antarctica{/em}. {em}Clione{/em} uses its radula—a “tongue with teeth”— to grab and extract the tissues from inside {em}Limacina{/em}’s shell.

Clione antarctica

{em}Clione antarctica{/em} is a non-shelled, carnivorous pteropod. This specimen was collected by PAL-LTER scientists aboard the R/V Laurence M. Gould.

Alciopid Worm

This Alciopid is one of the few worms that spends its entire life cycle in the open ocean. This specimen was collected from Antarctic waters by PAL-LTER researchers from the R/V Laurence M. Gould.

Polychaete Worm

PAL-LTER researchers collected this unidentified deep sea polychaete and copepod at 1000 meters depth using a MOCNESS net.

Tomopteris

Tomopteris is one of the few worms that spends its entire life cycle in the open ocean. This specimen was collected from Antarctic waters by PAL-LTER researchers from the R/V Laurence M. Gould.

Ice Squid

This paralarval "ice squid," {em}Psychroteuthis glacialis{/em}, was collected from the waters of the Southern Ocean along the West Antarctic Peninsula by scientists with the Palmer Long-term Ecological Research program.

Larval Ice Fish

This larval icefish (Family Channichthyidae) was collected by PAL-LTER scientists from the R/V Laurence M. Gould along the West Antarctic Peninsula.