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Volume 28, issue 2 | Copyright
J. Micropalaeontol., 28, 143-151, 2009
https://doi.org/10.1144/jm.28.2.143
© Author(s) 2009. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

  01 Nov 2009

01 Nov 2009

A minute new species of Saccammina (monothalamous Foraminifera; Protista) from the abyssal Pacific

N. Ohkawara1,2, H. Kitazato1, K. Uematsu3, and A. J. Gooday4 N. Ohkawara et al.
  • 1Institute for Research on Earth Evolution, Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC) 2-15 Natsushima-cho, Yokosuka 237-0061, Japan
  • 2Graduate School of Environment and Information Sciences, Yokohama National University 79-7 Tokiwadai, Hodogaya-ku, Yokohama 240-0067, Japan
  • 3Marine Technology Center, Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC) 2-15 Natsushima-cho, Yokosuka 237-0061, Japan
  • 4National Oceanography Centre Southampton, Empress Dock, European Way, Southampton SO14 3ZH, UK

Keywords: agglutinated foraminifera, single-chambered, saccamminid, psammosphaerid, meiofauna

Abstract. Saccammina minimus sp. nov., a spherical agglutinated organism presumed to be a foraminiferan, is described from the Kaplan Central site in the abyssal eastern Equatorial Pacific (5042 m water depth). The new species is minute in size (<100 μm diameter) with a test wall composed of a jumble of small mineral grains and a few relatively larger diatom fragments. Occasional specimens, often droplet-shaped rather than spherical, have a simple aperture. The new species is by far the most abundant organism in sieve fractions >32 μm of samples collected at the KC site. In six subcores (6.6 cm2 surface area, 0–1 cm layer) from two cores obtained during a single deployment of a multiple corer, it represented 59% of all stained foraminifera in the samples. However, it had an extremely patchy small-scale distribution on a scale of centimetres; for example, 3, 285 and 1090 specimens were extracted from three subcores. A separate study has reported similar patterns among other minute indeterminate monothalamous foraminifera at the Kaplan East site (4032–4089 m water depth) located to the east, c. 1200 km from our study site. The reason for these very patchy distributions is not clear.

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