Anti-Caturday: Cucumber of the Seven Seas

Pineapple Sea Cucumber by Richard Ling
Pineapple Sea Cucumber by Richard Ling

Last week I shared possibly the most comical creature in existence. So today I thought I’d tell you about the creature last week’s little beast uses as it home, namely the Sea Cucumber.

The Sea Cucumber is basically a tube that lives in the bottom of the ocean, sifting through the sand for anything and everything that’s decaying. And that’s not even near to the strangest thing about them. They live their lives with their heads literally buried in the sand, their mouths constantly going through whatever they find in the bottom. They don’t have a brain as such, only a circular clump of nerves surrounding their mouths. Since their mouths are always inside sand, they can’t very well breathe through anything in thei heads, so they breathe through their anus. They also breed through their anus, spreading eggs or sperm into the water, hoping it will meet another. If a predator comes to scare a Sea Cucumber, it will spray a sticky substance or even poison from its anus. They have collagen walls between their muscles so if they want to squeeze into or out of very tight spaces, they essentially just loosen the collagen and simply slide on in.

If anything, Sea Cucumbers are the commensurate reason for there never to have been a creator. And even if there were one, it certainly has a strange sense of humour.

Sea Cucumber by Peter Nijenhuis
Sea Cucumber by Peter Nijenhuis
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