26 Feb 2010

Walking on cliff’s edge?

This tiny gastropod is one of the smallest shells that we can observe in our sea. I think it’s much easier to spot it if it chooses to go for a walk over the Mediterranean's biggest shell Pina nobilis! In this photo, given to us by our friend Sokratis Karalis, the small shell looks like walking between a cliff and a river (it’s a Greek expression don’t blame me if you didn’t understand). I am very happy when I find nice pictures from Mediterranean not so fancy animals. It is very hard to tell which of the Bittium sp. it is but most often we meet at the depths the Bittium latreillii (Payraudeau, 1826).
Sometimes I have detected Bittium sp. between urchin spines so I think these tiny animals are nature’s admirers like all of us.

14 Feb 2010

Tiger Year Vs Valentine Day

The Chinese lunar calendar rolls in as the Year of the Tiger, quite ironic if you
consider that the South China Tiger is listed as one of the world's 10 most
endangered animals with only a few thousand remaining in the wild.
Human activity has all ready decimated 3 sub-species of tiger....

Valentines Day, the day of love and affection finds us far away from our big
love, the sea so we dedicate this post to her, as always.

Calyx nicaeensis is not always
heart shaped, but this lucky encounter took place in Pilio.
Unfortunately, the populations of this sponge have suffered from
a disease outbreak in many parts of the Mediterranean, so it can be considered
rare in a few places, however their populations have not yet been evaluated.
The disease has affected Greece as well.
Old fishermen also used a small part of this sponge to defog their masks.
Sponges are a very important storehouse for biochemical compounds,
with marked medicinal properties and the research has only just begun!!!!