Caught on Camera: Pacific Sleeper Shark in Underwater Volcano

URI grad student Brennan Phillips and his colleague, Alex DeCiccio ’10 have been doing some pretty exciting research—exploring and filming underwater volcanoes in the Solomon Islands of the Western Pacific looking for hydrothermal activity. But as if that wasn’t interesting enough, they’ve discovered activity of other kinds as well. Although the environment is extremely hot and acidic, their underwater video footage revealed a surprising variety of sharks living inside the calderas of the underwater volcanoes.


Among the video they captured was rare footage of the elusive Pacific sleeper shark. These creatures are rarely seen or filmed, and little research has been done on them because specimens are difficult to find and difficult to preserve.

For more about Phillips’ and DeCiccio’s Solomon Islands explorations, read our Spring 2015 story, “Hot Water Doesn’t Hamper this Research.”