Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Bubblegum Coral

Image: NOAA
Do you remember how the Giant Tree Sponge brought a bit of weird looking fun and levity to the serious business of surviving in the deep sea? Well check out their partners in sublime!

Paragorgia arborea is a Gorgonian coral found in depths between 90 and at least 2,500 metres (300-8,200 ft).

Image: NOAA
They can reach at least 2.5 m (8 ft) tall, so they're like deep sea trees and about as surreal as you could possibly want. Tremendous!


Regardless of height and width, they remain surprisingly thin. It's like those 2 dimensional trees in old computer games; they had to continually spin on the spot so that you never saw them from the side and noticed they were pixel thin. Disaster! Suddenly you realise you're definitely not actually aiming a bazooka at an enemy helicopter.

Image: NOAA/MBARI
As with real trees, Bubblegum Coral serve as home for various creatures. Here's one covered in tiny Scale Worms.

Image: NOAA/OER
Sometimes it all gets a bit much. This one is smothered in crabs and Brittle Stars. I guess when your tree looks like that, the decorations are gonna have to be pretty weird to keep up.

4 comments:

TexWisGirl said...

perfect name for these. :)

Comment1 said...

It really is! So long as you don't try and use it like bubblegum.

Chloƫ Langley said...

I am thinking about using the last photo as a template for the Christmas tree!

Comment1 said...

You can NOT ask for any better inspiration!

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