Wednesday 4 February 2015

Persian Carpet Flatworm

Image: divemecressi
Pseudobiceros bedfordi
It's a flying, Persian rug!

Just look at those beautiful colours and patterns!

Image: Pei Yan
This is the workmanship that has made Persian carpets the byword for luxury flooring for over 2,000 years.

Take off your shoes before coming inside. Wash your feet first. Just walk around it. Hoverchairs are to your left. In fact, I might just put the carpet on the ceiling instead.

Image: Bolanos, Marcela
Eyes. Lots and lots of simple eyes
Except it's not a carpet at all. It's a flatworm. That's why it isn't a disaster to find it submerged in seawater.

And it's not Persian, either. It comes from lagoons and reefs in the Indo-Pacific Ocean.

Video: Bo Mancao

Also it doesn't fly, it swims by undulating its entire body. Which is only 10 cm (4 in) long

Video: James Zhan

And it's a hermaphrodite who has two penises which it uses to fence against other Persian Carpets. Whoever gets stabbed first gets injected with sperm and is left holding the eggs.

Real carpets don't have stabby penises, although if they did it could serve as an effective anti-theft device. It'd stop people walking all over it, too.

Image: Matthias Liffers
The Persian landscape looks just like coral from up here!
And it turns out we had Aladdin all wrong this whole time. He was actually a tiny, Polynesian man who breathed underwater and used his carpet to engage in sexualised jousting matches.

How could Disney have got it so wrong?


  1. Just look at that thing. Beautiful, ostentatiously decorated, and willing to whip out its penis to fend off potential lovers/rivals.

    I could see one or two of these making an appearance in a Shakespearean tragedy. Or at least an episode of Game of Thrones.

  2. So much drama even the carpets are in on it!

  3. sometimes i have a dreadful time loading up your blog page. *sigh*

    it's an interesting creature.

  4. :( I must do something about that. At least there's a fascinating creature at the end of it!