Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Barnacle Girl

The University of Florida News is reporting that a Pacific Ocean barnacle has found its way to the Florida coast. Megabalanus coccopoma is a big, sharp-shelled crustacean that can grow "at least as large as a woman’s palm" (don't ask me where they got that measurement from). Biologists note that the barnacles are expected to be a fouling hazard for boats, but it is so early in the invasion process that the impact of this species is not yet clear. While the species was just discovered in Florida for the first time this summer, records are also known from Georgia, Texas and Louisiana.

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