Hot vent crabs are only found around hydrothermal vents, hydrothermal seeps and submarine volcanoes on the ocean floor. They have evolved to deal with the extreme conditions found in these hostile environments, such as very high temperature, high acidity in the water and potentially toxic levels of metals and gases. They were first scientifically described in 1980.
Scientific name: Bythograeidae
The planet's extremes confound the nature of life on earth.
Pompeii worms have been found to thrive at temperatures of up to 80°C around hydrothermal vents, making them the most heat-tolerant complex animal known to science after the tardigrades (or water bears), which are able to survive temperatures over 150°C. In this sequence, a specialised deep sea submersible allowed the audience a privileged view of the inaccessible deep ocean. Stunning images from this relatively unexplored world told the story of the scientific findings made in recent years that have changed the fundamental rules about the nature of life on Earth. (Courtesy of WHOI.)
Take a trip through the natural world with our themed collections of video clips from the natural history archive.
Animal kingdom record breakers - how fast can a cheetah run, how heavy is an elephant and what's bigger than a dinosaur? Watch amazing video clips from the BBC archive and uncover the fascinating facts about our smallest primate, the longest stick insect and the most venomous snake.
In autumn 2009, a major new series brought us life as we've never seen it before.
Watch the most memorable moments from an incredible career watching wildlife, chosen by Sir David from the BBC archive.
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