Name of plankton: Thecosome pteropods
Where sample was found: Hydrostation S, Giovannoni Cruise, September 8, 2016, 0-200m
Project: BIOS-SCOPE artistic collaboration
Photo credit: Samantha Newton
What role do these organisms play in the ecosystem: Thecosome pteropods are a type of shelled swimming snail that are part of the zooplankton. With diverse shapes and lifestyles they are part of the diel vertical community, contribute to grazing of the surface community, and make up ~13% of the calcium carbonate export from surface waters to the deep in the Sargasso Sea.
Interesting facts: This photo features five genus of thecosomes (Diacria, Cavolinia, Diacavolinia, Clio and Limacina), all collected at night during two 1-hour tows of the surface waters at Hydrostation S.