2 years ago
Friday, December 2, 2011
This Friday's beachcomb revealed lots of By-the-wind Sailors (Velella velella) cast up on Fish Hoek Beach. Each one is actually a colony of polyps that eat plankton and other microscopic life of the open ocean. They are related to jellyfish and bluebottles; and have stinging cells to catch their prey, but unlike bluebottles, they are harmless to humans. In this photo you can see the transparent sail that propels the little floating colony across the ocean. Absolutely amazing!