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Koster Seafloor Observatory is back

[2021-04-15] On 15th of April 2021 the next version of Koster Seafloor Observatory (KSO v 2.0) is released. This version includes new movies of wonderful seafloor critters, more extensive identification keys, and even some teaching modules for students and school classes.

KSO now features new footage associated to specific challenges. The first challenge is about identifying the fauna of rocky walls in the deep waters of Kosterhavet Nationalpark. You will encounter beautiful anemones stretching their tentacles into the water current, observe colorful clams glued to the rocks, and meet spiny crabs waving their claws at the camera. When you sing up for a challenge, you have three ways to study and identify deep water species in their natural environment. The “Phylum ID task” will give you a choice of 20 marine animal groups and teach you how to distinguish between the basic animal groups that you can find down in the abyss. You will learn how to recognize a sea cucumber, what is the characteristic behavior of a shrimp, or how to distinguish a sea anemone from a sea pen. The “Species ID task” will give you a choice of 60 species that are typically encountered in the National park. You will learn how to identify them, what habitat they live in, and how they interact with other species. In the “Species location task” you need to locate typical sea floor inhabitants in images of deep-water habitats. You will learn how certain species live together in communities and sea floor environments.

Link to website:

New Field guides. The KSO website now offers more extensive field guides for hard and softbottom habitats explaining the taxonomic compositions and ecology in the deep-water environments. There are even some additional guides explaining the effects of human activities in the National park such as litter pollution and trawling.

Assignments for marine biology students and school classes. KSO 2.0 also offers some material for teaching and training. It can be used to working in small groups and explore the marine fauna on the Swedish West coast. You will get assignments, like presenting your favorite animal, running competitions in identifying species, or create collections of animals and present these to your class. You can find the assignments here:

Swedish and English. All guides, identification keys, and assignments are both in Swedish and English.