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Thursday, February 22, 2024

New shrimp-like species found in cave near Caverns

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ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — Scientists have discovered a new shrimp-like species in a gypsum cave in southeastern New Mexico, only a few dozen miles from the famous caves at Carlsbad Caverns National Park.
The species of amphipod was unknown before being discovered about a month ago in the Burton Flats area east of Carlsbad, said Jim Goodbar, the Bureau of Land Management’s senior cave specialist. The agency announced the discovery Tuesday. … For the rest of the story, subscribe in print and on the web.
Blind, about a half-inch long and almost translucent, the amphipod was found in a subterranean pool inside a cave no more than 80 feet from the surface. The cave had been explored before, but samples had never been taken of the water until a biological inventory was done as part of plans to expand potash mining in the area.
For Goodbar and other cave researchers, short of rocketing into space, the depths of the earth represent one of the last unexplored frontiers for humankind.

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