10 03 2009

Did you know that the most dangerous animal in the coral reef Eco-system is the Crown-of-Thorns Starfish? Each arm has a lot of poisonous neurotoxin that could kill you quickly. It’s primary food source are coral polyps. People are trying to control the population of the starfish because it is consuming polyps faster than the polyps can grow. They are doing this by injecting the starfish’s own stomach acid into one of it’s arms. If it does not kill you, you will have symptoms such as vomiting and nausea. It’s predators are the Giant Triton (a mollusk) and Harlequin Shrimp. They exist in the Red Sea, Pacific, Northern and Southern Indian Ocean.

Did you know that one of the first explorers of the great barrier reef were the Chinese? A long time before the Europeans made it to Australia, the Chinese came there looking for sea cucumbers. Sea cucumbers are dried, then eaten. They call this food Trepang.

People some times call sea cucumbers the french word BĂȘche-demer.

In English, this translates to Spade of the Sea. They are called this because they are burried in the sand.

These are pictures of the crown of thorns starfish (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crown_of_thorns_starfish)