THIS IS A a part of the biggest fish-breeding floor but found. It occupies greater than 240km2 of the ground of the Weddell Sea, off Antarctica. Each nest is guarded by a notothenioid icefish, normally the daddy. Altogether, there are about 60m nests, housing greater than 100bn eggs. The web site was found by Autun Purser of the Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research, in Bremerhaven, and is reported in Current Biology. Dr Purser noticed the primary nests on a dive. Further dives revealed extra. He and his colleagues then towed cameras over the location to find its full extent. One motive animals reside in crowds like that is to swamp predators. That can, although, backfire when the predator is a contemporary fishing vessel. For a long time, there was discuss of creating the Weddell Sea a protected space. Dr Purser has give you but another excuse to take action.

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This article appeared within the Science & know-how part of the print version below the headline “The world’s biggest fish hatchery”

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