On the edge of a deep biosphere: Real animals in extreme environments

James J. Childress, Charles F. Fisher, Horst Felbeck, Peter Girguis

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This paper considers the possibility of animals living in a subsurface environment on the global mid-ocean ridge system. It considers the possible environments and looks at the possibilities of animal inhabitants of the subsurface biosphere based on adaptations of animals to other extreme habitats. We conclude that there are known bridging inhabitants of the subsurface biosphere, that part-time inhabitants are extremely likely, and that there could be full-time inhabitants if conditions are stable within the tolerance limits of metazoans for time periods of months.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Subseafloor Biosphere at Mid-Ocean Ridges, 2004
EditorsWilliam S.D. Wilcock, Edward F. Delong, Deborah S. Kelley, John A. Baross, S. Craig Cary
PublisherBlackwell Publishing Ltd
Number of pages9
ISBN (Electronic)9781118666135
ISBN (Print)9780875904092
StatePublished - 2004

Publication series

NameGeophysical Monograph Series
ISSN (Print)0065-8448
ISSN (Electronic)2328-8779

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geophysics


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