Scientists say dramatic new species of corals and sponges have been found in the Pacific during deep-sea dives northwest of Hawaii.
They were discovered at Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument in early December by submersibles operated by the Hawaii Undersea Research Laboratory during dives nearly a mile deep.
Christopher Kelley is the lab's program biologist. On Monday, he called sponges found at dive sites off Middle Bank, some 120 miles northwest of Hawaii, "absolutely bizarre."
During radio transmissions between the submersible Pisces IV and its support ship, Kelley said one observer remarked after seeing the sponges, "It looks like something out of Dr. Seuss."