Sunday, April 30, 2017

Mystery # 1

This is an trio of pink-tipped green anemones. They're a dime a dozen in the intertidal zone. But look again.

Anthopleura elegantissima, with whelks and Wosnesenski's isopod.

First, what has it been eating? It looks like a black snail shell, and, separate from that, two pieces of very white flesh. Is the anemone in the act of expelling the snail shell and simultaneously swallowing the meat?

Second, and this really leaves me wondering; look closely at the right bottom of the anemone. Look through the translucent flesh. See the circle of what looks like snail eggs inside?

Zooming in.

How did they get there? Did a snail crawl in, avoid being digested, exit the stomach, and lay her eggs? How is that possible?

Or are these part of the usual anemone anatomy that I have never seen, and can't find in any cross-section diagram?

Or did the anemone just crawl along the rock and station itself on top of eggs?

And no, they can't be seen from the opposite side; I'm not looking through the entire animal.

What do you think?

1 comment:

  1. Commenting so I'll get a notification for any potential answers.

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