Expedition blogs and news from the Shallow Marine Surveys Group

Three years later, more new species!

By Paul Brewin

The new species and new records keep pouring in as the SMSG and AIMS team is on its 10th day of our 2015 Ascension Island diving expedition.  As with previous years, specialists Jude Brown and Peter Wirtz helped identify crustaceans, nudibranchs, flatworms, anemones, and corals that are either new records for Ascension, or new species to science.


This year the team has focused on those places that have been historically overlooked, such as the labyrinth of spaces in tile fish piles (see previous blog entry), cryptic species living inside rhodoliths (balls of calcareous algae that contain small spaces), under rocks, and interesting commensals such as tiny almost translucent crustaceans that live on black coral trees.

Crustacean flatworm Nudibranch

Photos of crustacean, flatworm and nudibranch


It is difficult to count up exactly how many new critters we’ve found at the moment without more detailed study on each taxa.  But for now, its clear that the marine biodiversity inventory of Ascension Island is still climbing, continuing to highlight the uniqueness of this marine biodiversity hotspot in the middle of the equatorial Atlantic.
The amazing Tile Fish Piles
A Snake Eel new to Ascension


Latest Posts

Latest Comments

Dave John Hunting seaweeds around Ascension
31 August 2013
Great to see underwater photos of this very unusual submarine environment where the ubiquitous black...
Helen Marsh Team Member Stedson Stroud
03 July 2013
Great to hear more about Stedsons work, and how he got started, having met him on Ascension Island l...
Simon Plummer Volunteer Ecological Surveyors
10 June 2013
I can’t stop smiling thinking of what a brilliant time you are having. The fact that I can visualise...
Simon Plummer Black triggerfish anecdotes
10 June 2013
An enjoyable and funny read, thank you steve for making me chuckle.
Simon Plummer Ascension Island fish record
10 June 2013
The photos are brilliant, envious.


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