Scientist finds new creatures in deep Australian seas

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On Sunday, a U.S – Australian team of scientists announced that they had uncovered new marine animals in their research of previously unexplored Australian waters, such as bizarre carnivorous sea squirt and ocean-dwelling spiders.

The team spent a month in the waters off the coast of Tasmania and found new species and indications that global warming was having an effect on the marine life, Lead Researcher Ron Thresher said.

Among the new species discovered were a strange carnivorous sea squirt, giant sponges and new sea spiders.

The sea squirt, also known as an ascidian, stands 50 centimeters tall on the sea floor at a depth of just over 4,000 meters. It traps prey in its funnel-like front section if they touch it when they swim past. It described as basically an underwater Venus fly trap, but much bigger.

Modern-day deep-water coral reefs were also found, however, there is strong evidence that this reef system is dying, with most reef-forming coral deeper than 1,300 meters newly dead, he said.

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