pictures, Science

Nagoya Aquarium – Jellyfish

More in the series of sea creatures found at the Nagoya Aquarium, here are some of the jellyfish species found there.  If you weren’t aware, jellyfish overpopulation is becoming a problem in the world’s oceans.

The captions refer to the organism pictured directly below.

Moon jellyfish. Aurelia aurita.

A hydrozoan jellyfish. Tima formosa.

A cnetophore. Bolinopsis mikado.

Spotted Jellyfish. Mastigias papua.

Upside down jellyfish. Cassiopea sp. These species are actually synthetic due to their endosymbiotic zooxanthellae, and can sting!

pictures, Science

Sea Creatures of Uozu Aquarium – 2 – Organ-pipe Coral

I recently visited the Uozu Aquarium in Toyama while searching for the Japanese Fireworms in Toyama Bay.  Here’s another sea creature I found there!

Day 2 – An Organ-Pipe Coral – Tubipora musica

The only species in its genus, this organ-pipe coral naturally occurs in the Indian Ocean.  Out of every “organ-pipe” projects polyps that extend rather far into the surrounding water, where they catch plankton as food. The polyps wave in the reef currents like tall grass on a breezy day.

Bioluminescence, pictures, Science

Sea Creatures of Uozu Aquarium – 1 – Pandalid Shrimp

I recently visited the Uozu Aquarium in Toyama while searching for the Japanese Fireworms in Toyama Bay. The aquarium staff were extremely helpful and hospitable, and our laboratory group had the chance to spend three leisurely hours exploring the aquarium.  I was able to take a lot of videos, so I plan on posting one per day here with short descriptions.

Day 1 – A Pandalid Shrimp

I’m not sure what this species is, but it is a pandalid shrimp – a species that is probably edible! These shrimps are found in cold waters, and aside from being delicious, are economically important.  Most pandalid shrimp start their lives as males, then become females later in life – a life strategy not uncommon in the ocean. Most species live between 3-5 years and can lay thousands of eggs in one season. Fried or fertilized?

Many Heterocarpus shrimp (a genus of pandalids) use bioluminescence to defend themselves by ejecting a blue glowing cloud into the surrounding water when disturbed.  This blue cloud gives the shrimps a chance to escape, like a squid’s ink cloud.