Thomson Unicomarine’s Principal Taxonomist, Dr Ruth Barnich, was invited to the Natural History Museum in Paris last month, to join a three day symposium focussing on marine animals found on a recent expedition to the Pacific Ocean near Papua New Guinea. The symposium was arranged by the research programme, Tropical Deep-Sea Benthos. Animals from these tropical waters are not well known and scientists expect to discover a number of new or rare species.
Ruth worked in a small team with other specialists from around the world to help identify the animals which will now be made available to other scientists for further studies through the museum’s online loan system.
Being one of the leading scale worm specialists, Ruth had the particular task of setting up a validated reference collection for scale worms which will help during the identification of the remaining abundant material.
She was particularly excited to see some scale worms with unusually decorated scales that mimic the pattern of the corals among which the worms were found.