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Beehives old style Serbia

Beehives in Texas destroyed mercilessly killing half a million bees

Bees have been known to exist on Earth for the last 40 million years. The first evident fossil of a bee was found in Europe close to 35 million years ago but it is believed that they originated in Africa and spread northwards into Europe and Asia.

Bees are considered as one of the most biodiverse species with over 16,000 variants of bees are found across the globe. Their sizes can vary and can range from as small as 2mm to 40mm in length.

Bees have been adapted by nature for feeding on nectar and pollen. Nectar acts as a source of energy and pollen provides proteins for growth. Bee pollination is important ecologically as well as commercially. There is a significant decline in the number of wild bees in the habitat due to deforestation and unsustainable development, which has increased the commercial values of bee and this, has lead to the increase in setting up of commercially managed bee hives and honey collection businesses. Beekeeping is also become an option as a professional career due to an increase in demand for beekeepers in this field of agriculture.

However recently, an incident was reported at a bee yard in Brazoria County, Texas where it is suspected that someone had deliberately set the beehives on fire which has now killed over half a million bees in the area. There are reports that the yard is still burning and bees were clinging on and trying to care for their egg until the last moment till they were killed by the fire. Nearly 20 beehives have been destroyed and each of the beehives had close to 30,000 bees contained in it. Such a merciless act carried out by humans in the 21st century which is the era of awareness and global unity to save planet Earth is a plight to hear and read such incidents. Hive vandalism is more baffling as around six months ago, incidents were reported in Iowa which killed thousands of bees.

Similar incidents like these left 200,000 bees dead in January 2018 and 500,000 bees in December 2017. The Brazoria County Crime Stoppers are offering a fancy reward of $5000 to anyone who provides clues and information about suspects. It is also asking for donations to cover its losses.

The world has seen a surprising decline in the number of honey-producing colonies which decreased from 5.9 million in 1947 to a new low of 2.44 million in 2008. Pollinators like bees are a vital part of the ecosystem of our Earth. This is of great concern to everybody and our planet’s ecosystem.


pumpkin toadlets

Scientists discover fluorescence in frogs of Atlantic Forest

In the Atlantic Forest in Eastern Brazil, the pumpkin toadlets use their bright colours to warn the other species which can attack them. But scientists have also discovered that these frogs display a signal which is otherwise unknown. Under ultraviolet light, they glow as bright blue. The findings were published in Scientific Reports.

The pumpkin toadlets reside in moist tropical and subtropical forests. As their ears are not developed properly, these frogs are deaf to the mating calls of their own species. Currently, they are the only known species that are deaf to mating calls. While investigating this, scientists accidentally discovered the glowing patterns in two species, Brachycephalus ephippium and  Brachycephalus pitanga.

When observed under natural light, they appear as orange, red or yellow. But when put under UV light, several blue patterns came up on head, back and legs of the toadlets. This is known as fluorescence and it is very rare in vertebrate animals which reside on the land. Scientists are still not sure how fluorescence helps these frogs. It may help them in identifying attackers from beforehand, take preventive actions or identify prospective partners for reproduction.

Fluorescence differs from bioluminescence, in which the body of the animals produces light with the help of chemical reactions. But fluorescence will not function in total darkness as in fluorescence, light is absorbed by some specific molecules and then it is emitted at larger wavelengths, such as red or green which finally creates a glow.

Animals which display fluorescence are corals, scorpions and sea turtle. Scientists also discovered in 2018, that chameleons also show fluorescence. Besides this, another team of researchers found out that two species of a tree frog found in South America have fluorescent skin. But in case of the frogs, the glow originates from the bones similar to that of chameleons.

Researchers observed through chemical analysis that the bony plates which were located on the head and back of the toadlets were very fluorescent. The cells which exhibit fluorescence are also called fluorescent chromatophores. They contain pigments called fluorosomes which contain proteins that are activated with the help of potassium ions. The fluorescent patterns arise from the motion and aggregation of these pigments within the chromatophore.

It is still not known clearly how do the toads use fluorescence for their benefit. It may serve as a warning sign to animals about the toxic nature of the skin as some birds can detect fluorescence in natural light. It can also be used for communication among themselves, as the toads lack the middle ear so they cannot hear calls from their own species.

helheim glacier breakoff

Scientists declare alarming results of melting glaciers in Greenland

Greenland which is home to the second largest permanent ice sheet has lost ice at a very alarming rate in the past decades. The loss has increased almost six times which can lead to a rise in the sea level as suggested by a research on almost fifty years of data.

The report has been published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. It makes an estimate on the loss of ice in Greenland. The figures tell that there has been a loss of 51 billions tons of ice from 1980 to 1990. But this figure has seen a tremendous increase to 286 billion only between 2010 and 2018. Out of the 14 millimetres of rise of sea level which has occurred in Greenland since 1972, half of it has occurred only in the last eight years.

Scientists predict that the worst is yet to come. The areas with the most potential for ice loss, far northwest and northeast of Greenland, which borders the Arctic Ocean have not seen a change like the other areas. If the melting of ice occurs here at a rapid pace, it will lead to the overall loss of ice from Greenland as well as the rise of sea level.

Eric Rignot, a researcher at University of California and NASA remarked that the 1980’s was the time when climate of Earth started to alter in a major way from the natural course due to the emission of greenhouse gases into the Earth’s atmosphere. The melting of ice glaciers in Greenland is a major source of concern when combined with similar loss in Antarctica. The region of Antarctica has also lost ice six times faster than forty years ago, which has been never observed in measurements in the modern era.

West Antarctica has been already affected to a great extent and in addition to that some portions of East Antarctica are also showing ice loss at a major rate. Greenland is home to 200 major glaciers, most of which extend to the ocean rising from thick ice sheets. They flow in the outward direction in narrow submerged canyons.

Most of the ice loss occurs in a steady manner such as in streams of the surface of the ice sheet and also undersea flows. Since Greenland lies in the Arctic Zone which has been warmed by more than two degrees Celsius, there ice loss has increased at a high pace.

There has a rapid change since the last thirty years and humanity has to be ready to face the consequences and we should take actions for preventing the dangerous scenarios.

Smoke over the river Volga

UN releases Sixth Global Environment Outlook with both good and bad news for us

The Sixth Global Environment Outlook, which is the most comprehensive assessment of the environmental system which is produced by the United Nations in five years has both good and bad news in the store for us.

There has been continuous deterioration of the environment since the first report of GEO-6 was published in 1997 with almost irreversible impacts on the environment if the issues are not addressed. But all hopes are not lost as there are routes to create positive changes and thus a sustainable future can be ensured.

It was launched in the month of March, in the fourth session of the United Nations Environment Assembly which took place in Nairobi. The report is the result of the collaborative work of about 200 experts for 18 months. It covers a wide range of topics such as biodiversity, quality of air, oceans, freshwater, energy and human health.

The state of our environment was assessed and possible courses of action for achieving the goals for the 2030 Agenda of Sustainable Development were also discussed.

There is a fair amount of good news in the GEO-6 amidst all the negative things which reflect the state of the environment in the whole world. There are some pathways to cause a wide scale positive impact which have to be carried out with utmost sincerity and a great rate for creating sustainable futures. The policies which are most likely to make a big impact are related to entire systems such as food, waste management and energy.

For example, if we reduce the consumption of fossil fuels, it leads to better health benefits by reducing the outdoor air pollution which is responsible for causing premature deaths. Also, efforts directed towards reducing worldwide hunger rates can help us to fight many issues such as climate change, land degradation and chemical loss. But all of this has to be done in a short amount of time because, with the increasing rate of change of environmental conditions, the scope for positive action is continuously reducing.

But the GEO-6 also informs us of the condition of the environment which has been deteriorated mainly due to factors such as population growth, climate change and urbanisation. Not to mention, the unprecedented rates of change in technology have also hurt the environment. Currently, we are dealing with issues such as

  • Air pollution causing premature deaths of around 6-7 million annually
  • The sixth largest mass extinction in the history of the planet
  • Disposal of around 8 million tonnes of plastic in the oceans
  • 1.4 million annual deaths due to polluted drinking water and lack of sanitation

Under these circumstances, the various goals under Sustainable Development Goals and Paris Agreement are unlikely to be completed. The GEO-6 has called for sustained and urgent efforts by the governments and business leaders for achieving it.

Deepsea Challenger Pilot Sphere Interior

Researchers find oil-eating bacteria in Mariana Trench

A group of researchers from the University of East Anglia has found out a very unique bacteria which feeds on oil. They have observed this microorganism in the deepest portion of the oceans of Earth which is the Mariana Trench. Researchers from various parts of the world such as Russia and China also participated and they have made a very comprehensive analysis of the population of microbes on the ocean’s trench.

The Mariana Trench is situated in the western part of the Pacific Ocean and it is also the deepest natural trench on Earth. It appears as a crescent shaped moon on the Earth’s crust and the greatest depth is 10,994 metres which is also known as the Challenger Deep. On the other hand the height of Mount Everest is 8,848 metres.

Scientists believe that they know more about the conditions on Mars than the Mariana Trench. A reason is that till date very few expeditions have made a journey to the trench for studying the ecosystem and the inhabitant organisms. Perhaps the most famous of the expeditions is the one organised by famous marine explorer and Oscar winning film director James Cameron. He ordered a highly specialised submersible for collecting sample organisms from the trench.

Dr. Jonathan Todd who is in UEA’s School of Biological Sciences said that the research team collected various samples of the microbes at the deepest location in the Mariana Trench. After the analysis of the sample was done, the team identified a unique group of hydrocarbon degrading bacteria.

Hydrocarbons are basically organic compounds which are only composed of hydrogen and carbon atoms, as evident from the name. They are found in a wide variety of compounds all over the planet such as oil fields, manufacturing areas.

The microorganisms which were found mainly fed on the compounds which are similar to that of oil and then it was used for fuel. These similar microorganisms also played a role in decomposing the oil spills which occurred in the natural disasters such as the 2010 Oil Spill in Mexico Gulf. The bacteria has been found in a lot of abundance in the Mariana Trench or in other words, the proportion of hydrocarbon feeding bacteria on Earth is highest in the Mariana Trench.

A sample of the microbes was isolated for experimental purposes and it was found that if the similar conditions were simulated in the laboratories then they consumed the hydrocarbons even here. So, hydrocarbons are found even 6000 metres below the ocean surface level and even in the deepest places on Earth such as Mariana Trench. Hence this suggests that microbes are producing them even in such distinctive environments.

The results of the study have been published in the Microbiome journal.

Decline of amphibians is harming biodiversity

Deadly pathogen responsible for massive decline in amphibians

For several years, biologists at various sites around the world reported many species of frogs had disappeared. It was reported in Costa Rica in 1987 that the golden toad was missing. The next year in 1988, Arthur’s stubfoot toad had disappeared. Such incidents were piling up. Frogs disappeared without any proper reason. And this was not random, a pattern across the globe was observed.

A new study published in the Science magazine made a comprehensive report of the damage in the amphibian world. The total comes up to a staggering 501 species of amphibians. The chytrid fungi Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) and Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans (Bsal) are responsible for this catastrophic damage in amphibians. Scientists were clueless that chytrid fungi can cause so much damage.

Ben Scheele, an ecologist at Australian National University has firsthand experience of the damage caused by the fungus. He reported about an Australian site with favourable conditions for mass breeding of frogs. Before the fungus, the area was very much abundant with alpine tree frog population but the species cannot be found anymore.

Scientists are now calling chytrid fungus as the most destructive pathogen ever, which is a grave reason for concern. The majority of the damage occurred in the 1980s. It was at this time that the disease was circulated worldwide. Central and Southern America were affected to a great extent with considerable damage in Europe, North America, Australia and Africa. It is quite intriguing to know that there has been no such damage in Asia, where the fungus has been for millions of years.

Chytrid fungi have many species and most of them are just decomposers. But Bd is an exception. It preys on the skin of amphibians. And we humans are responsible for its worldwide circulation through activities such as trade and global war.

Bd attacks the skin of the amphibians which they use for activities such as breathing and maintaining the water levels. What makes it so lethal is that it is very effective in spreading. Bd can infect a wide variety of species, and it kills the amphibian very slowly. It can also spread by means of touch or by water and lives on the host body for several months at a time.

Researchers identified Bd as the main reason for the disappearance of the amphibians in the late 1990s but its impact can be traced as far as 1960s. Hence, scientists cannot reverse the damage which has already been done. But we can urge the governments to reduce global trade of amphibians and improve the screening procedures.

electricity eating bacteria

Electricity-eating microbes use electrons and fix carbon dioxide to grow

We have often seen our metal products catching rust and we usually apply some grease over it in order to prevent the rust over it. According to the study carried out by the researchers at the Washington University in St. Louis, it explains that there are certain bacteria’s which eat the electricity and transfer electrons to fix carbon dioxide to fuel its growth.

The research was lead by Prof. Arpita Bose, assistant professor of biology in Arts & Sciences, and Michael Guzman, a PhD candidate in her laboratory. The team showed how a naturally occurring strain of Rhodopseudomonas palustris takes up electrons from conductive substances like metal oxides or rust.

This is a continuation of the previous research carried by Bose, which states that R. palustris TIE-1 can consume electrons from rust proxies like poised electrodes, a process called extracellular electron uptake. R. palustris being phototrophic, it uses energy from light to carry out certain metabolic processes.

The new research explains the cellular sinks where this microbe dumps the electrons it eats from electricity. “It clearly shows for the first time how this activity—the ability for the organism to eat electricity—is connected to carbon dioxide fixation,” said Bose.

physiology of R palustris bacteria

Overview of the physiology of R. palustris.( Credit: Nature journal)

This special ability clearly shows the microbe’s natural ability for sustainable energy storage or other bioenergy applications which have caught the attention of the Department of Energy and Department of Defense.

Explaining the origins of the bacteria Bose says “R. palustris strains can be found in wild and exotic places like a rusty bridge in Woods Hole, Massachusetts where TIE-1 was isolated from. You can find these organisms everywhere. This suggests that extracellular electron uptake might be very common.

Co-researcher Guzzam adds “The main challenge is that it’s an anaerobe, so you need to grow it in an environment that doesn’t have oxygen in order for it to harvest light energy. But the flip side to that is that those challenges are met with a lot of versatility in this organism that a lot of other organisms don’t have.”

The researchers in their newspaper showed that the electrons from electricity enter into proteins in the membrane that are important for photosynthesis. Surprisingly, when they deleted the microbe’s ability to fix carbon dioxide, they observed a 90 percent reduction in its ability to consume electricity which means that it really want to fix carbon. This process is similar to the recharging of the battery.

Bose adds “The microbe uses electricity to charge its redox pool, storing up the electrons and making it highly reduced. To discharge it, the cell reduces carbon dioxide. The energy for all this comes from sunlight. The whole process keeps repeating itself, allowing the cell to make biomolecules with nothing more than electricity, carbon dioxide and sunlight. We hope that this ability to combine electricity and light to reduce carbon dioxide might be used to help find sustainable solutions to the energy crisis.

The new research answers basic science questions and provides plenty of opportunity for future bioenergy applications.

Published Researchhttps://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-019-09377-6

Simplified diagram of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation

Changes in ocean ‘conveyor belt’ leading to abrupt climate changes

We are all aware of global warming due to which we experience a lot of changes in the climate. Recently a team of experts found out that there are changes that are happening due to this global warming in the ocean.

Let us now understand as to what are the changes happening in the ocean. In the Atlantic Ocean there lies a giant “conveyor belt” that carries warm water from the tropics into the North Atlantic, where they cool down and sink southwards into the ocean. This circulation pattern is a very important player in the global climate change since it regulates the weather patterns in the Arctic, Europe and across the world.

Today, we have strong evidence that the conveyor belt is slowing down. The scientists are scared that this would cause a dangerous situation to occur like causing climatic changes in Europe and warming the waters of the East Coast of the United States which in return could harm the horticulture.

According to a study done by collaboration between scientist at the Columbia’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory and the Norwegian Research Centreit is believed that if this slowing process continues and there is no measure taken in order to stop it, the entire system would become weak and the effects would be worst.

The above study precisely determines the time lags between past changes to the ocean conveyor belt and major climate changes.

Thermohaline Circulation

This map shows the pattern of thermohaline circulation also known as “meridional overturning circulation”. This collection of currents is responsible for the large-scale exchange of water masses in the ocean, including providing oxygen to the deep ocean. The entire circulation pattern takes ~2000 years. (Source: Nasa Earth Observatory)

The team of scientists studied the AMOC (Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation) which is a key section in the ocean current pattern. They zeroed in on a section where water sinks from the surface to the bottom of the North Atlantic and they confirmed that the AMOC started weakening about 400 years before a major cold snap 13,000 years ago and began strengthening again about 400 years before abrupt warming 11,000 years ago.

Francesco Muschitiello from the University of Cambridge and the lead author said, “Our reconstructions indicate that there are clear climate precursors provided by the ocean state—like warning signs, so to speak.

In order to understand whether these changes in the ocean conveyor belt occurred before or after the abrupt climatic shifts that punctuated the last deglaciation in the Northern Hemisphere, the scientist pieced together the data from a sediment core drilled from the bottom of the Norwegian Sea, a lake sediment core from southern Scandinavia, and ice cores from Greenland.

Usually, Carbon-14 is used in order to determine the age of that particular fossil but in oceans, it is not possible to determine as Carbon-14 is formed in the atmosphere and it takes time for it to reach the oceans. That is why Carbon is measured in the nearby lake sediment core and they found out the age of each sediment core.

Now they compared the real age of the marine sediments to the age they were reading from Carbon-14 measurements. Indifference in them gave an estimate of how long it took for Carbon-14 to reach the ocean which means it revealed that how quickly the water was sinking in this area in a process called “deep water formulation” which is essential to keep the AMOC going.

Detailed view of synchronized CO2, climate and ocean circulation records during the Younger Dryas stadial

Detailed view of synchronized CO2, climate and ocean circulation records during the Younger Dryas stadial. Credit: Muschitiello et al., Nature Communications, 2019

The final piece of the puzzle was to analyze ice cores from Greenland, to study changes in temperature and climate over the same time period. Measurements of Beryllium-10 in the ice cores helped the authors precisely link the ice cores to the Carbon-14 records, putting both sets of data on the same timeline. Now they could finally compare the order of events between ocean circulation changes and climatic shifts.

Comparing the data from the three cores revealed that the AMOC weakened in the time leading up to the planet’s last major cold snap, called the Younger Dryas, around 13,000 years ago. The ocean circulation began slowing down about 400 years before the cold snap, but once the climate started changing, temperatures over Greenland plunged quickly by about 6 degrees.

Keeping all that aside, let us stop polluting and let us take preventive measures so as to prevent this slow down of the above-mentioned conveyor belt and to save humanity from its disastrous effect.

Published Research: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-019-09237-3

Algae Curtain Architects with the System

Algae curtains designed to curb urban pollution

Recently, two European architects Claudia Pasquero and Marco Poletto, have developed plant-filled plastic curtains called “living walls” that help purify dirty and smokey air.

The curtains contain a mazelike network of tubes filled with microscopic algae, which remove carbon dioxide from the air, pumping out oxygen via the carbon-sequestering process known as photosynthesis. Air flows into the bottom of the curtains and rises through the tubes, feeding the microalgae along the way.

Algae curtains and cladding can capture and store up to one kilogram of carbon dioxide per day.
“Microalgae have unique properties that have been discovered by the biologists that allow them to re-metabolize some of the waste that our city generates. What we’ve done is try to understand how we can integrate microalgae in the urban environment,”  said Claudia Pasquero, an architect with the London-based firm EcoLogicStudio.

Marco Poletto said that they foresee a strong market for the eco-friendly curtains, especially for use on warehouses and other large buildings valued more for their function than their appearance. They said the curtains might sell for $350 a square meter.

Poletto said that they were inspired to develop the eco-friendly curtains after noticing an abundance of algae in ponds near their office.

Last month, the architects displayed an early demo of the curtains in Ireland, covering the first and second floors of Dublin Castle with more than a dozen of the drapes.

Algae Curtain Building Wall

These algae-filled curtains are designed to cover the facades of buildings to help cut down on harmful greenhouse gas emissions. (Credit: NAARO)

The curtains used to cover the castle can suck more than two pounds of carbon dioxide from the air each day, according to the architects. That’s roughly the amount removed each day by 20 large trees, they said.

According to the design team, this particular module “is particularly suitable for retrofit as it is very lightweight, soft, adaptable, and does not require heavy substructures to be installed.”

“As we collaborated with microbiologists and learned more and more about the algae’s potential, it became kind of an obsession,” Poletto said. “For us, the aspect of design is really essential,” Pasquero said, “so it’s not simply a technological innovation — it’s a design solution.”

Smart cities, smart homes, autonomous vehicles, robotic factories, etcetera dominate the current panorama of popular futuristic scenarios, but they all desperately need spatial and architectural re-framing to engender beneficial societal transitions,” said EcoLogicStudio.

Designers such as Nicolas Roope answered to the UN report, by calling the need to avert climate change “the greatest design challenge in history”.

Presently, the firm is researching a mass-market prototype that will aim the large shed or warehouse typology, with a goal to cover the large surfaces of malls, distribution centers, and data centers.

Mariana Trench

Mariana Trench: the Deepest Part of the Planet Earth

The world is full of spots that mankind love to explore. Whether it is a mountain or sea, an island or a desert, people love to have a different experience by exploring the concerned avenues. There are many areas which pose such challenges for adventure lovers. Though many have lost their lives for such explorations, the craze for the same has not stopped, and people keep on hunting such new locations as well.

Do you know about five of the deepest points in our world, here is a list of them:

RankNameLocationDepth (feet)
1Challenger DeepIzu-Bonin-Mariana Arc, Mariana Trench, Pacific Ocean36,197
2Tonga TrenchPacific Ocean35,702
3Galathea DepthPhilippine Trench, Pacific Ocean34,580
4Kuril-Kamchatka TrenchPacific Ocean34,449
5Kermadec TrenchPacific Ocean32,963


While thousands of individuals have summited Mount Everest, the premier point on Earth, less than a few have succeeded to explore the planet’s deepest point, a site known as the Challenger Deep in the Pacific Water’s Mariana Trench. It is a famous place much-known for its varied sea lives and depth as well as the wonder of the nature below the surface of the earth.

If you cut the famous mountain pick of Himalayas, Mount Everest off at the sea level and place the same at the marine bottom here, there will be still a couple of miles of water over the top of it. This trench is positioned in the parts of the western Pacific Ocean. It lies to the east of the Philippines. The Mariana Trench is a curved shaped blemish in Earth’s shell that measures more than 1,500 miles long and 43 miles wide on average.


  1. How was the Mariana Trench formed?
  2. Why is a Mariana Trench expedition difficult?
  3. Expeditions
  4. Life in the trench

How was the Mariana Trench formed?

This famous Trench was shaped because of a process known as subduction. The crust of the Earth is made up of thin tectonic plates which “float” on the layer of the planet which is in melted form. While floating on the mantle, the boundaries of these plates gradually bump into each other and from time to time even strike head-on.

Cross section of the Mariana trench (Credit: Wikimedia Commons)

When two plates bang into each other, a sea plate plummets down into the mantle, while the other plate trips up over the top. This crusade creates a ditch where the plunging oceanic plate slogs down the edge of the superseding plate. This crusade also creates the largest known seismic activity, which often creates tsunamis.

The majority of the Mariana Trench is under a U.S. protected zone. This is currently the part of the Mariana Trench Marine National Monument. This was established in the year 2009.

Why is a Mariana Trench expedition difficult?

Part of the reason that the Mariana Trench is uncharted is due to the hydrostatic burden. When you cross the threshold any body of water and start plunging from the surface, the deeper you dive, the more water conceals you. The greater the load of water on you, the greater will be the pressure on your body.

When you dive into a swimming pool and go all the way to the bottommost of the deep end, you can often feel the hydrostatic pressure in contrast to your ear membranes. You get a feeling of having them squeezed. Now just magnify the same feeling by nearly a thousand times when you are in the deepest trench. You can apprehend how incredible the weight would be in the Challenger Deep with nearly 7 miles of water above your head.


As thought-provoking as it is to discover the Mariana Trench as well as the Challenger Deep in particular; numerous fearless pioneers have prospered in this task.

The trench was first broadcasted during the Challenger voyage in 1875, using a weighted rope, which logged a depth of 8,184 meters. The Mariana Trench was also measured in 1951 by the British Survey ship, Challenger II. Again in 1984, the Japanese guided a survey vessel to the Trench to gather data using a multibeam echosounder.

The waves of sound sent in the research from the device known as echosounder bounced from the bottom of the Pacific Ocean. They are received on a graph which helped to create the ocean’s bottom map. This method helped the researchers to assemble important ecological data without jeopardizing a diver deep in the sea. In the year 2010, a sonar survey was conducted with multibeam echosounders by the University of New Hampshire. They found new features of the seafloor and obtained the most precise depth of Challenger Deep which is 10,994 meters. This is said to be one of the most accurate measurement.

Most notably, and also most in recent times, in 2012, director James Cameron made a significant, solo dive down to the bottommost of the Challenger Deep in a specially – designed operated submersible named DEEPSEA CHALLENGER. This voyage unruffled data and samples previously unidentified, leading to prosperity of scientific information about one of the least known parts of our Earth.

Life in the trench

Contemporary scientific voyages have exposed astonishingly diverse life in these punitive conditions. Fauna existing in the deepest portions of the Mariana Trench lives in widespread dark and life-threatening pressure.

Sustenance in the Mariana Trench is tremendously inadequate because the deep gorge is far away from land. Leaves, coconuts, and trees are hardly ever found its way into the bottommost of the trench. Instead, some microorganisms rely on substances, such as methane or sulfur, while others being gobbled up marine life lower on the food chain.

Recently studies found microbes in the Pacific Ocean surviving on arsenic which is a poisonous element.

There are three most general entities at the bottommost of the Mariana Trench known as amphipods, small sea cucumbers, and xenophyophores.

The lone celled xenophyophores bear a resemblance to massive amoebas, and they eat by nearby and gripping their food. Amphipods are glossy, shrimplike scroungers that are found in the trenches at deep-sea. There is also holothurians which can be considered as a new species of radiant sea cucumber.


Amphipods(Credit: Wikimedia Commons)

Researchers have also acknowledged more than 200 dissimilar microbes in sludge collected from the Challenger Deep. The sludge was carried back to labs on dry land in an exceptional container and is meticulously kept in circumstances that simulate the crushing cold and pressure of that of the Mariana Trench.

However, a misleadingly susceptible viewing fish is not only right at home here, but it is also one of the area’s top predators. In 2017, scientists reported they had gathered samples of a rare creature, nicknamed the Mariana snailfish, which lives at a depth of about 26,200 feet.

With sustained research with modern tools and technology used for the measurement helps the researchers get the accurate picture of this trench.