Marine expedition discovers new species on Dominica’s west coast

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A marine research team has ended its 42-day expedition off Dominica, after finding at least nine new species of fishes and crustaceans on the island’s west coast, Caribbean 360 reports.

The team of marine archaeologists and researchers, which docked in Dominica on February 24, spent their days exploring Dominica’s waters in search of new and unusual marine life and biological information.

The team covered 24 square miles off the western coast in 31 dives going as far as two miles offshore.

In their forays into the deep, they found, among other interesting things, turtles feeding, a torpedo ray and hydrothermal vents.

The discoveries include new species of hogfish, deepwater toadfish and an anemone, and an unidentified species of catshark.

Many species await exact identification by experts at various natural history museums and research institutions in the United States and the Netherlands.

A small group of students and stakeholders got a chance to go almost 900 feet deep where they found batfish, lionfish and an anchor with the chain still attached.

The marine research initiative resulted from a partnership between the marine archaeology society of Curacao and the Smithsonian Institute of Natural History.

All information and specimens collected in Dominica will ultimately be available to researchers globally.

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