Be the most informed person in the room with Newsy's free e-newsletter

View our privacy policy: http://www.newsy.com/privacy/

When Rocks Aren't Rocks Because They're Actually A Pile Of Crabs

Researchers were surprised to find a giant cast of crabs off the coast of Panama, because this is the first time they've been found so far south.
SMS

A group of researchers were studying biodiversity off the coast of Panama when they came across an unfamiliar, murky cloud.

"When we dove down in the submarine, we noticed the water became murkier as we got closer to the bottom. ... We just saw this cloud but had no idea what was causing it," said Jesús Pineda, lead author of the study.

They thought they were looking at sedimentary rocks at first — that is, until the "rocks" started moving.

The researchers had discovered a giant cast of red crabs walking along the seafloor.

It came as a surprise for the group, because the red crab species had never been seen so far south: "To find a species at the extreme of their range and to be so abundant is very unusual," Pineda said.

The researchers say the discovery shows just how unpredictable and mysterious seamounts — undersea mountains — can be.

Seamounts cover more than 11 million square miles of Earth's surface.

We've studied less than 1 percent of that area.

Featured Stories
Edward Snowden speaks during an interview in Hong Kong.

Russia Has Extended Edward Snowden's Asylum

Police officers arrest a man

National Police Orgs Recommend De-Escalation Be Adopted Across The US

Betsy DeVos testifies during her confirmation hearing.

Democrats Leave DeVos Hearing With More Questions Than Answers

Want to see more stories like this?
Like Newsy on Facebook for More Animals Coverage