A larval mussel

A larval mussel captured during the winter several hundred meters above the brine pool. The hinged shell is visible below. The delicate tissue above the larva is the velum, which has cilia (moving hairlike structures) that the larva uses for movement and feeding. Image courtesy of Gulf of Mexico 2002, NOAA/OER.

Related Links

Gulf of Mexico

Gulf of Mexico: Seasonal Breeding in Mussels

NOAA Ocean Explorer Gallery