Many marine creatures are affected by human activity. This would include even species that have just been discovered. Deep-sea mining has been found to be harmful to a newly discovered octopus species.
The newly discovered octopus species was just seen last spring. The octopus has been found at around 4,000 meters under the sea just near Hawaii. The octopus has a colorless appearance, which has earned the species the nickname of "Casper." The new species, though could be vulnerable, as it has been found out that the octopus would lay their eggs on the stalk of sponges. These sponges are on rocky crusts which are being mined.
The rocky crusts are important since it has metals that are being used in smartphones and computer parts. Should these rocky crusts or nodules be disturbed, it could endanger the octopus as its eggs are placed those nodules. Autun Purser from the Alfred Wegener Institute's Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research has said that the female octopus would watch over the eggs, and that can take years.
The process manganese builds on the nodules can take millions of years. The metals on the nodules take a long time to form, and its buildup is gradual. While the metals might be valuable in the making of smartphones and computer parts, the nodules where they are found is part of the habitat of the octopus, according to Science Daily.
In the study, it has been found that different octopus species are on manganese rich areas. The octopus found there have long lives, and recovery from the loss of habitat might take a long time as well, as Phys Org notes. The loss of habitat can have an effect on the ocean ecosystem and biodiversity there. Losing the octopus in those areas could have a domino effect which would affect other living organisms.
Protecting the habitat as well as those living in it is always important. Deep-sea mining has been found to be harmful to a newly discovered octopus species. Another animal in danger is cheetah, which are close to extinction.