Welcome to TONMO, the premier cephalopod interest community. Founded in 2000, we have built a large community of experts, hobbyists and enthusiasts, some of whom come together when we host our biennial conference. To join in on the fun, sign up - it's free! You can also become a Supporter for just $50/year to remove all ads and gain access to our Supporters forum. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for more cephy goodness.
I have been organizing my photos and videos from previous research trips and it's been a fun trip back in time. So glad @tonmo posted the first one as a great idea! I'll be continuing to post photos and videos of our nautilus research trips the past 10 years here, in no particular order.
2012-2014: Philippines, American Samoa (compilation)
In order to study nautiluses in the wild. We either have to use an ROV (costly), dive down to them (hard to impossible), bring them to the surface (not wild observations), OR use baited remote underwater video systems (BRUVS) that rely on attracting nautiluses to a fixed bait source over time. This is a short compilation of shoving the camera on the system, tossing the system over, and seeing what life is like 300 meters below the surface...
Our team was there hoping to find that the fuzzy nautilus, Allonautilus scrobiculatus, alive and well after few reports of live sightings of it in 30 years and little research into that area. After a lot of hard work, we not only caught some live specimens with traps (which were returned a live and well to the sea) but we also recorded the fuzzy nautilus alongside the "regular" nautilus, Nautilus pompilius. This is one of only two areas in the world where these two species of nautiluses live side by side.
American Samoa was an interesting survey site. The ocean floor was pretty variable with depths and we had to really pinpoint the sites we wanted to deploy our gear. But we did it! And we recorded some great data and made some really great observations. Even when we are not recording nautiluses, we are recording other organisms in the deep sea. We've only seen a few slipper lobsters on our cameras and even less octopus. Throughout all our surveys across the Pacific, we've only recorded two octopuses - one here and another in the Philippines.