Hydrothermal vent biota

Jeremy E. Schreier, Richard A. Lutz

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Scopus citations


Hydrothermal vents are inhabited by some of the most extraordinary organisms on the planet. Biota at these environments live in association with chemosynthetic microbes, and are adapted to wide thermal gradients, high pressure, and chemically extreme environments. Visually dominant, large, gutless, vestimentiferan tube worms cover vent chimneys, with a specialized organ that houses symbiotic bacteria. Clams and mussels adapted to the deep-sea environment, also dominate at many hydrothermal systems and contain symbiotic bacteria in their gills to harness chemical fluids emerging from vents. Other vents are covered in swarms of shrimp with a unique eye-spot thought to sense thermal energy. As ephemeral and vulnerable environments laden with minerals, hydrothermal vents are subject to human activities and exploitation, and should be protected as a source of scientific advancement, and as a wonder of the natural world.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEncyclopedia of Ocean Sciences
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9780128130810
ISBN (Print)9780128130827
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)


  • Chemosynthesis
  • Deep Sea
  • Hydrothermal vent biology
  • Hydrothermal vent community dynamics
  • Hydrothermal vent ecology
  • Hydrothermal vents
  • Larval dispersion
  • Marine policy
  • Riftworms
  • Symbiosis
  • Vestimentiferans


Dive into the research topics of 'Hydrothermal vent biota'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this