When the fictional Dr. Ian Malcolm famously said, “Life… uh… finds a way,” in Jurassic Park, it became a much-quoted line from the film. (and eventually a meme)
It would seem that once again, he was right and we should have listened to him.
A group of scientists learned this lesson when they sent a robotic camera down an active undersea volcano and found sharks living down there!
The Kavachi is an active and temperamental undersea volcano near the Solomon Islands in the southwest Pacific Ocean.
It erupted several times in the past, often spewing molten lava about 70 meters above sea level.
The seawater around the volcano is not only very hot but also highly acidic. So it was like a high school, basically.
Jokes aside, it was not the kind of environment one would expect to find any kind of life, aside from highly specialized microorganisms.
So imagine the team’s surprise when they found hammerhead sharks, silky sharks, and a Pacific sleeper shark swimming around in the extremely hostile environment.
According to a PhD student from the University of Rhode Island, Brennan Phillips, the team “were basically freaking out” at their discovery.
“Divers who have gotten close to the outer edge of the volcano have had to back away because of how hot it is or because they were getting mild skin burns from the acid water,” said Phillips.
These animals were casually moving around in environments which were much more hostile, which prompted the researchers to wonder how they had adapted to live there.
For now, we don’t know much else other than that it’s really interesting and unique situation. But the team is surely looking into it further.
Despite how much we think we know about our Mother Earth and the creatures dwelling on it, there’s always something new and interesting around the corner, ready to challenge everything we thought we knew.
Header Image Source: Junkee