Friday 20 November 2015

Bluebell Sea Squirt

Image: Arjan Gittenberger
Perophora namei
Squirts on a stick!

The genus Perophora contains lots of colonial Sea Squirts where each cloned individual is connected to the others by a long, slender stolon.

Image: Nick Hobgood
But it's not so common for that stolon to be strong and rigid enough for the whole colony to stand up like a beautiful bluebell plant!

Each tiny individual, or zooid (or blue bell in this case), is able to filter out tiny specks of food from the warm, Indo-Pacific waters they live in. So it's nice to see some flowers who can pull their own weight for a change!


Heckbot said...

I think I hear the flowers complaining, they aren't too happy about the remark against their apparent inabilty to manoeuvre their weight (which their doctor insist is within healthy range. [Except Rafflesia.]). Oh dear, it seems the monocots, dicots and what I think might be a magnoliid are all in cahoots on this one... I hope your PR people can becalm angiosperms. If the graminoids go on strike, it might be the end of humanity!

This/These creature(s) is/are absolutely gorgeous, though. I kind of wish they would colonize land. Tunicates are known to be a lot more humble than... them.

Joseph JG said...

@Heckbot: Haha! Well, we're in to autumn round here so hopefully I'll have a good few months of placation before the onslaught of spring. I think there's time!

@TexWisGirl: Yup! Nice to see a pretty sea squirt every now and again!