>From the description it sounds like these animals are ascidians (tunicates)
that settled out on the plastic. Because there is no mention of the
usually obvious siphons associated with solitary tunicates, I would even
say they might be colonial tunicates. Of course, this is sheer speculation
without more info, say a picture or specimens. Maybe some specimens got
collected and preserved.
Hope this is helpful.
At 09:23 AM 2/28/02 -0800, Cindy Klepadlo wrote:
>>To: bionet-biology-deepsea at net.bio.net>>From: "s" <s at nospam.com>
>>Subject: ~~ strange creatures ~~
>>Organization: http://extra.newsguy.com>>X-Priority: 3
>>X-Newsreader: Microsoft Outlook Express 6.00.2600.0000
>>Date: Thu, 28 Feb 2002 10:00:11 +0000 (GMT)
>>Sender: owner-deepsea at hgmp.mrc.ac.uk>>>>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
>>>>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..
Lawrence L. Lovell, Museum Scientist
Benthic Invertebrate Collection
Scripps Institution of Oceanography
9500 Gilman Drive Mail Code 0244
La Jolla, California 92093-0244
voice (858) 822-2818
fax (858) 822-3310
email <llovell at sio.ucsd.edu>
Visit the Benthic Invertebrate Collection Website at: