Monday, August 03, 2020

New baby!

Some of the kelp from the visit to the wharf ended up in my aquarium, and I pulled up a stool to sit and watch. I discovered a few new residents:
  
Small hermit, orange striped green anemones, mating amphipods, and what's that?

I was pleased to see amphipods up close to the glass, and relatively still. It's a pair; the male grabs his female and carries her around until she's ready to mate, up to a week. They don't seem to eat and spend a lot of their time just sitting around. This pair is prettily striped.

On the rock above them there was another tiny critter. At first, I thought it was another amphipod, but on a closer look, I realized it has a different shape.

Amphipod pair and new critter.


Zooming in.

And I think I recognize this. A few weeks ago, on a batch of eelgrass and sea lettuce I brought home for the aquarium, several eelgrass isopods came along for the ride. They are largish isopods, up to an inch and a half long. They crawl about under rocks or ride the eelgrass.

Eelgrass isopod, in the tank.

Look at it: 6 plates along the back, a curved plate behind the head, a wide, flat tail covering, 14 legs. Compare it with the one above. It's a baby! Born in my tank!

And there will be baby amphipods. There always are.

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Había traído una rama de alga marina "kelp" a casa, y puse unas piezas en el acuario. Me arrimé un taburete y me senté a observar. Y descubrí que hay nuevos residentes en el tanque.

La primera foto es de un cangrejo ermitaño, unas anémonas, y una pareja de anfípodos cerca del vidrio y tranquilitos, lo que es raro cuando andan solos. Cuando la hembra está cerca de su muda, el macho la agarra y no la suelta hasta que puede impregnarla. Puede detener a la hembra hasta una semana. Mientras tanto, parece que no comen, y se pasan la mayor parte del tiempo descansando, esperando.

En la piedra  a la derecha, había otra criatura, que al principio pensé que era otro anfípodo hasta mirarla más de cerca. No lo es, pero creo que la puedo identificar.

Hace algunas semanas, en una bolsa de hierba marina (eelgrass) y algas, unos isópodos se aprovecharon del aventón y se sumaron a mi acuario. Estos son inverterbrados de hasta pulgada y media de largo. Se pasan el tiempo bajo las piedras o trepándose en el eelgrass.

Mira la foto de uno de estos: 6 placas a lo largo de la espalda, una más, en curva, atrás de la cabeza, y un gran disco cubriendo la cola; 14 patas. Compárala con la criaturita en la piedra. ¡Sí! ¡Es un isópodo bebito! ¡Nacido en mi tanque!

También habrá anfípodos bebitos. Siempre los hay.

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