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Strange Creature

Amy Baco abaco at soest.hawaii.edu
Mon Mar 4 12:30:54 EST 2002

I'm certainly not an expert, but how many striations were there? 5? Sounds
more like some kind of echinoderm.  Some Holothurians in particular are
known for squirting out their guts when stepped on or squeezed.


On Fri, 1 Mar 2002, Grant Law wrote:

> No one seems to be biting on this one . . .
> I'm baffled -- it sounds like a cnidarian, but then it doesn't! Was it stalked?  Was the stalk consistent with the creature's radial symmetry?  Was it in fact radially symmetrical (I just assumed)?  Did it have tentacles of any sort, along the margin of the bell (or elsewhere)?  Was the "mouth" dead center inside the bell?  Were there any structures at all on the body?
> I don't know, I'm from Oregon -- maybe someone from down south might know what this is.  Hopefully they will chime in.
> Grant
> Hello:
> A friend came across some strange marine creatures washed up on the beach
> today at South Padre Island and we're trying to find out what the heck they
> are.
> Fleshy invertebrates ranging in size from about 1cm to 4 or 5cm attached to
> a plastic film (ocean debris).
> These organisms are about the size and shape of the inside of a scallop
> shell but do not have a shell. The consistency is about
>  like a cabbagehead
> jellyfish but essentially opaque. When cross-sectioned laterally , there are
> radially oriented striations visible at the outer edges of the cross-section
> . The flesh is greyish, similar in color to an oyster.
> When squeezed or stepped on, the organism ejects filaments of *bright* neon
> orange (tentacles?) from what appears to be it's mouth.
> Wished I'd had a camera with me - this is a very strange creature..

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