Bathynomus is the common name of a deep sea Isopod whose scientific name is Bathynomus giganteus. It’s nearest common cousins are lobsters, crabs and pillbugs. The Bathynomus is also quite large; it is one of the largest isopods known today. Bathynomus is also quite well known across the world, it has been found in several different habitats in different parts of the world.
Habitat: It lives its entire life in complete darkness on the abyssal plain. It has been known to live all on the Australian, Mexican and Indian tectonic plates.
History: This isopod is also believed from evidence in the fossil record to have been existence since at least 160 million years ago. Even given its long time of existence, there has not been substantial evolution in Bathynomus since the Mesozoic*; each Bathynomus community examined (from each of the plates) was observed to be virtually identical to each other (with the exception of size). Some biologists take Bathynomus as an example of light’s effect on the evolution of animals**; therefore, the official discovery of the Bathynomus in the last twenty years has been a subject of great importance.
Food: It is carnivore/scavenger. Bathynomus eats the bodies of dead fish off the sea floor as well as plankton, sponges and worms, effectively eating all it can in the murky darkness of existence half a mile beneath the surface.
Flavor: In addition to being a deep sea wonder, Bathynomus is also edible and tastes like Sweet Crab Meat.
*While there are no fossils of Bathynomus known to exist, scientists conclude based on the following facts: 1) The fossil record indicates that 160 million years ago the Australian, Mexican and Indian plate were next to each other. 2) Bathynomus is nearly identical in three different communities that have been evolving separately for 160 million or more years. Scientists assume that they had a common ancestor in the Mesozoic that resembled the current species almost identically. The other possibility is that the species Bathynomus is actually convergence that has occurred three separate times; however, that seems much less likely given the evidence.
**Some say that light is the primary reason for change and evolution in an organism; therefore any organism that is not regularly exposed to light, should have undergone substantially less evolution.