New Species of Crab Found in Antarctica
Scientists have discovered a new white and hairy crustacean in one of the most unlikely places in the world, Antarctica.Meet Kiwa tyleri, also known as the Yeti crab, the latest addition to the yeti crab family and the first to be found in the chilling waters of Antartica. This clawed crustacean ranges anywhere from 0.5 centimeters to about half a foot in length and is only the third species of yeti crab discovered in the world, first found in the South Pacific in 2005.
Sven Thatje, ecologist at the United Kingdom's University of Southampton, stated:
"We knew immediately that we'd found something tremendously novel and unique in hydrothermal vent research."
This species of yeti crab lives in extremely harsh environments, the harshest of their relatives, more than 8,500 feet below sea level in just above freezing temperatures. K. tyleri have very short limbs built for climbing and are both stout and compact.
Females were found outside the regular habitable zone. Thatje hypothesized that this is due to the yeti crab larvae which may require colder temperatures to develop. The cold takes a visible toll on the females bodies, making them deteriorate over time. The female crabs likely breed only once before their death. But, overall, the yeti crabs can adapt to their harsh lifestyles pretty easily.
K. tyleri are an incredible find. I can't even begin to imagine what other types of animals and species exist throughout the depths of the ocean, or even the rest of the world. Let me know what you think about this cute crustacean in the comments below!