David Hasselhoff Crabs Face Extinction

25 Jun

by Russ McSpadden / Earth First! News

crabsYou may think this is a joke but it isn’t. The hairy-chested Yeti crab, nicknamed the “Hoff” by deep-sea scientists for its resemblance to the luscious body hair of David Hasselhoff, could very well fall into the oblivion of extinction due to warming oceans caused by climate change.

The Hoff was first discovered in 2009 hanging out around hydrothermal vents deep beneath the Indian and Arctic oceans where water temperatures can reach 716 degrees Fahrenheit. The vents spew noxious and acidic chemicals, heavy metals and hydrogen sulfide.

One might think the Hoff could then survival a dozen degrees of temperature change but, according to a recent report published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B, as the ocean warms, the ability of oxygen-rich surface water to mix with deep ocean waters is diminished, reducing the oxygen levels in the deep sea, which will likely result in mass extinctions for many of the creatures that live within the precarious ecology of deep sea vents.

The Hoff has developed a rather ingenious method of food collection, foregoing the hunt for prey. Rather, it farms sulfur-oxidizing bacteria within its chest hairs, harvesting it when hungry, perhaps another similarity with David Hasselhoff.

0004But unlike the bear chested star of Baywatch, while the Hoff crab can survive at the perimeter of the boiling, spewing bowls of the Earth, it probably won’t survive the toxic excesses of industrial society.

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