Macrofouling of deep-sea instrumentation after three years at 3690 m depth in the Charlie Gibbs fracture zone, mid-Atlantic ridge, with emphasis on hydroids (Cnidaria: Hydrozoa)

R. Blanco, M. A. Shields, A. J. Jamieson*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Macrofouling is a common problem when deploying underwater instrumentation for long periods of time. It is a problem which can effect scientific experiments and monitoring missions though the creation of artificial reefs (thus increasing local biological activity) and reduce the quality of scientific data. Macrofouling is an issue typically considered to be restricted to the photic zones and is absent or negligible in the deep sea. To the contrary, the recovery of an accidentally lost deep-sea lander after 3 years submergence at 3960 m on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge (North Atlantic) revealed dense colonisation of macrofouling organisms. These organisms were found attached to all surfaces of the lander regardless of orientation and materials. The occurrence of such deep-sea macrofouling should be carefully investigated given the recent developments in long-term deep-sea observatory networks. (C) 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)370-373
Number of pages4
JournalDeep Sea Research Part II: Topical Studies in Oceanography
Issue numberPart B
Early online date21 Jan 2013
Publication statusPublished - 15 Dec 2013


  • deep sea
  • macrofouling
  • hydrozoa
  • long-term submergence
  • Mid-Atlantic Ridge
  • time-lapse camera
  • North Pacific
  • ocean
  • settlement
  • observatories

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