Monday, October 01, 2012

Gould's Bubble Shell

Gould's Bubble Shell, Bulla gouldiana, plowing through the soft, muddy sand looking for food at low tide. Note also the slipper shells (Crepidula onyx) hitching a ride. Unlike many seashells, Bulla gouldiana cannot fully withdraw into its shell, depending on burrowing under the soft, silty sand for protection from would-be predators. These shells are quite fragile and very susceptible to crushing and bleaching, the shells being thinner than an egg shell (hence the name bubble shell). However, the quiet tidal waters were full of ones in near perfect condition that had been cleaned out by the scalpel sharp teeth of small crustaceans, needing no work whatsoever and harming nothing in the process.

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