Saturday, September 22, 2012

Top Five Favourite Aquatic Animals

Of Monsters and Men "Dirty Paws"

(1) Sea horses--this is just about the only exception to my aversion of small animals that move and that's probably because this is an aquatic creature. I LOVE seahorses. They look so peaceful and majestic. What a gorgeous creature!

Did you know: 1. that the male is carries the baby seahorses instead of the females in a pouch 2. there is a longsnout seahorse and a long-snouted seahorse (different species)

(2) Whales--this should of course make sense since they're so big, but I love whales because it boggles my mind how tiny I am and how large they are. I often wonder how big I am in comparison to a whale's anatomy. Am I the size of it's fin? I find that so interesting. I need to still go whale-watching-next summer!

(3) Manatee--These gentle creatures look like giant teddy bears in the water. Of course I've never met one so I'm not sure if they growl or not, but from what I've heard they are very kind sea mammals. Let's hope the poaching stops so I can meet a manatee one day. Normally, I think babies are annoying but this baby manatee looks very cute.

Did you know: Manatees can weigh up to 1300 lbs and are up to 13 feet long (c/o wikipedia) ? That's more than twice my size. They are also the only animals with a vascularized cornea and they sleep half the day in the water.

(4) Octopus--I'm sorry but these things are amazingly vicious and yet deceptively gorgeous too. I think I pick this because I love the number 8 because if you turn it sideways it is an infinity sign. 

Did you know that: (1) An octopuses first strategy is to to hide when in danger. I feel like I know far to many people who are like that too so perhaps that is a legitimate defense tactic? (2) Octopuses also eject ink as a second line of defense in order to bamboozle predators. Ink=pepper spray for women. I think these creatures are on to something.  (3) They have very good eyesight too.

*Picture from Baltimore's National Aquarium. Clearly I did not pay attention to the 'no photography' sign.

(5) Jellyfish--Ok This last favorite sea creature is just a pretty to see and I am fascinated because of bio-luminescence and its biological applications. I once read that the protein that allows jellyfish to appear illuminated has biotechnological applications such as gene marking. This research/application won the Nobel prize in chemistry.

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