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Leslie

Critter Expert
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Everything posted by Leslie

  1. I sent the photos to several experts & it stumped all of them. One got the family right - Inachidae - but couldn't come up with a genus. I guess none of them has ever seen a freshly molted animal. So that really is a first. That's a real shame about the Seaway. Unfortunately it's a common attitude that "muck" is worthless. Deep sea trawling is destroying coral reefs thought to be as much as 10,000 years old & hosting 1,300 species of animals because they're in the middle of featureless mud that no-one cares about..... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deep-water_coral
  2. Oh my gosh.... the sponges in the video that you or someone touched? That sure looks like a empty sponge-covered carapace of the decorator crab Camposcia retusa, which makes me think that your little guy is a newly molted retusa. Hardly anyone ever sees them like that! He was just waiting for you to go away so he could start picking the sponges off his old molt & re-decorate his nice new shell. Here's an image of a specimen with the sponges removed from half the body - http://kanichang.web...cia-retusa.html
  3. Here's one opinion. From Jody Martin, the crustacea curator at my museum. "Interesting. The dorsally rounded and very setose body, coupled with the fact that the claws are small and that only 3 walking legs per side are visible, lead me to think that this is most likely a member of the family Homolodromiidae, and probably the genus Dicranodromia. It's a fascinating family, considered primitive by nearly all crab workers, and not much is known about it. The eyes of homolodromiids are sort of simple however, usually simply rounded on a stalk, and yet these eyes look more "beanshaped" than is true for that family. I'd like to see it, but I'm sure the specimen was not collected. Dicranodromia species do not get that large -- you mentioned a size of an adult hand -- so maybe this is the genus Homolodromia."
  4. Something's been bothering me about that thing all night. I finally had to get up & do some fact checking. There's only 1 family of spider with 2 eyes & they are attached directly to the body wall. Your little guy has stalked eyes which makes it a crab. Doh! I'll send the image to a couple of friends & see what they say. You could also try Gary Poore, crustacean expert at the Museum of Victoria and author of a book on marine decapod crustacea of Australia.
  5. That's a surprise - it's a real spider (or else a crab that really really looks like one, but there does seem to be a cephalothorax & an abdominal region). Not a sea spider which belong to the Pycnogonida. Real spiders can live underwater for at least a few hours, some for much longer - http://news.national...a-drowning.html To get an ID you'll need to google for Australian spiders experts & send the photo to them, sorry. Please let us know if you get a response.
  6. You're looking in the wrong place. Try Saccoglossa, Limapontiidae. Ercolania? Stiliger? Costasiella?
  7. Can't find a match. I'll send it to Angel for his opinion. The yellow-greenish coils are the egg sacs of a parasitic copepod. Look up Ismaila on the Sea Slug Forum for an example - http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/ismaila
  8. Hi Kaj -- Great capture (but then we've come to expect that of you!). Shrimp do get hit by a lot of different types of parasites including worms. I can't give you any specific information, only a link or two for general facts - [PDF] Handbook of Shrimp Diseases - the National Sea Grant Library nsgl.gso.uri.edu/tamu/tamuh95001.pdf http://en.wikipedia..../Parasitic_worm http://www.petshrimp...ss palaemonetes Incidentally, you're going to get a lot of hits on your bobbit video soon. The link was posted on our polychaete community forum.
  9. Nice! I'm going to send the photos to my supervisor, Regina Wetzer, who's an isopod specialist. Let's see if she can tell us anything more from the photos.
  10. Isopod, as all the visible legs have the same shape. But that's a strange head. Do you have images of it from other angles?
  11. Excrement. Sperm is transferred directly to the female by the male. Nice capture though!
  12. Neostylodactylus litoralis. Beautiful shots. The backlighting really shows the structure of the legs. With that amount of spinulation I suspect it's a filter feeder.
  13. Because most people do assume that somehow there is a link between animals that look similar. When they hear "mimic" they think of a human impersonating another, a parrot repeating words, etc.
  14. I doubt it. Besides, that a term I've never liked when applied to inverts. It really suggests that one species is actively copying the other which isn't the case. The exception might be octopuses, but I've always wondered if mimic octopuses raised in isolation from the animals they're supposed to be imitating would still assume the same shapes. I bet they would and that it's hard-wired into them.
  15. Nope. It's a Venus's girdle, Cestum veneris, a flattened ctenophore. The vertical band in the middle holds the mouth, stomach, & other organs.
  16. That's pretty hard to identify. The white in the body doesn't look natural so it might have a parasite.
  17. Hi Andrew -- It's something in the family Xanthidae or one of the families split off from it. There are hundreds of these little crabs & hard to id even with full body photos, sorry. But that polychaete hat is fabulous! I wish I had one so fetching.
  18. Too bad about your HDD! Well, I don't think it's a Paracaudina or another sea cucumber. Paracaudina species - especially young individuals - have translucent skin and it's easy to see the 5 muscle bands characteristic of holothuroids. They should be visible in an animal this size. I believe it's probably an acoel worm. They aren't noticed very much because of their small size. Until recently they were classified with flatworms but now they have their own phylum - Acoelomorpha.
  19. Do you have other photos of it that you can post? Or perhaps a enlarged crop?
  20. Hi Luko -- I kept hoping someone would pop in with an id or at least a suggestion but it looks as if we're all bad at juvenile (or small) IP octopus id. Sorry!
  21. Judging by web images I think a lot of people get them confused. The commonly found IP Hyastenus have 2 prominent rostral spines. Some of them are decorators with sponge over the entire body & all legs; often the sponge over the 2 spines fuses into 1 club-shaped mass. Others don't use sponges & are fairly free of covering or just have hydroids or algae attached to the rostral spines. I would go with Schizophyrys (or something related) rather than Hyastenus for your animals.
  22. The red is a sponge. You can see that the first pair of legs lacks the sponge covering. that's typical of some Schizophrys and the shape of the carapace with the marginal spines is also typical of Schizophrys. But that's just my guess since I check guide books like everyone else when it comes to crabs.
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