Sea pens. New Zealand, 2006.
Sea pens are colonial marine cnidarians belonging to the order Pennatulacea. Sea pens are grouped with the octocorals (“soft corals”), together with sea whips and gorgonians.
Unlike other octocorals, however, a sea pen’s polyps are specialized to specific functions: a single polyp develops into a rigid, erect stalk (the rachis) and loses its tentacles, forming a bulbous “root” or peduncle at its base. The other polyps branch out from this central stalk, forming water intake structures (siphonozooids), feeding structures (autozooids) with nematocysts, and reproductive structures. The entire colony is fortified by calcium carbonate in the form of spicules and a central axial rod.
We protect what we love. I believe seeing the beauty of the natural world captured in timeless photographs help communicate to people how wonderful the earth is. Photographs can also show people the threats to fragile ecosystems and their wildlife. After all, a picture says a thousand words.
Underwater photo-journalist Brian Skerry shares an important conservation message through his amazing photography skills. A must-watch.
I already posted this video a while back, but it’s so good, ima share it again!