SECRETS OF THE GULF EXPEDITION, MARCH 2007--BRINE SEEP AT EAST FLOWER GARDEN BANK
Following are images taken by the ROV Argus during the Secrets of the Gulf Expedition. These images show the area surrounding a brine seep at the base of East Flower Garden Bank. The super-saline water that is flowing from under the sea floor has created a concentrated brine lake and channel in which only certain bacteria are able to live. This "lake" and "river" within the ocean are only about 10 inches deep but have a very different habitat than their surroundings.
Additional expedition images can be viewed at the following links:
Click on a picture below to see a larger, hi-resolution image. Credit for all of these photos goes to the Institute for Exploration and University of Rhode Island Institute for Archeological Oceanography (IFE/URIIAO).
The sea floor beneath the brine lake at East Flower Garden Bank.
Areas of apparent salt encrustation and bacteria on the sea floor beneath the brine lake.
An object lying on the sea floor in the brine lake.
Current patterns on the sea floor beneath the brine lake at East Flower Garden Bank.
A marbled grouper swimming just above the brine lake at East Flower Garden Bank.
A closer view of the brine lake and its apparent salt encrustations.