A Metric of Invertebrate Coolness

Just when you thought the Invertebrate Wars were over.  A new measure of their coolness has been put forth.  Of course Jim L. and I think that is the presence/absence of Aristotle’s Lantern or radula is more than enough to evaluate coolness. However, neither of organisms have deserts name after them. Amanda lays it out at the newest marine blog to join the ocean web ranks.

This organism lives in all places where there is water: bays, harbors,
freshwater lakes, coastal environments, and the deep ocean.  It eats
microscopic particles out of the water, yet can grow so large, a person
could fit inside of it!  To find its microscopic food, it sifts through
microscopic particles one by one, to find the edible bits with up to
95% efficiency!  As if that’s not cool enough, this organism is the
star of a popular cartoon, is present in many people’s homes, and has a
delicious dessert named after it.

You think the trinity here will blow your mind for our varied expertise then head over to Drop In where the entire graduate student body at Moss Landing Marine Labs is blogging.

Dr. M (1801 Posts)

Craig McClain is the Executive Director of the Lousiana University Marine Consortium. He has conducted deep-sea research for 20 years and published over 50 papers in the area. He has participated in and led dozens of oceanographic expeditions taken him to the Antarctic and the most remote regions of the Pacific and Atlantic. Craig’s research focuses on how energy drives the biology of marine invertebrates from individuals to ecosystems, specifically, seeking to uncover how organisms are adapted to different levels of carbon availability, i.e. food, and how this determines the kinds and number of species in different parts of the oceans. Additionally, Craig is obsessed with the size of things. Sometimes this translated into actually scientific research. Craig’s research has been featured on National Public Radio, Discovery Channel, Fox News, National Geographic and ABC News. In addition to his scientific research, Craig also advocates the need for scientists to connect with the public and is the founder and chief editor of the acclaimed Deep-Sea News (http://deepseanews.com/), a popular ocean-themed blog that has won numerous awards. His writing has been featured in Cosmos, Science Illustrated, American Scientist, Wired, Mental Floss, and the Open Lab: The Best Science Writing on the Web.


4 Replies to “A Metric of Invertebrate Coolness”

  1. I’m pretty sure that Mr. Squarepants is the epitome of uncool – the Steve Urkel of the sea if you will. And don’t give me any of that “he’s so uncool he’s actually cool” logic – I’m not buying it.

    We all know that Patrick is the coolest invert on that show. Squidward? Not so much.

  2. I still say that nudibranchs are the coolest creatures in the sea, but what do I know I started with bay scallops as the career opener. So I guess I’m moving up the evolutionary ladder!

  3. Everyone loves a nudi! Scallops are pretty cool too, a jet-propelled ‘clam’. They have the added benefit of being delicious as well. Not too many recipes for nudibranchs.

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