It was our 14th expedition to the trenches of the Pacific Ocean, where depths can exceed 10,000m. And it was due to be our last for the foreseeable future.
We had been aboard the Schmidt Ocean Institute’s (SOI) vessel RV Falkor for 30 days. It was almost over. Then, it turned out to be “the big one”.
For this was the expedition in which my colleagues and I discovered a snailfish living some eight kilometres below the waves, deeper than any fish we know of. My colleagues from the University of Hawaii even recovered some in their traps.
In the past six years we have made many discoveries in the depths, such as the missing order of Decapoda (shrimps) that were long thought absent from the trenches but are actually rather conspicuous.… Read the rest