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Natural World

Brain-like blob found in a Vancouver lagoon

September 1, 2017 | Comment icon 8 comments

Known as a bryozoan, the alien-like creature has previously only been found east of the Mississippi River.
Resembling a big brown ball of slime, this bizarre organism is actually made up of hundreds of smaller creatures called zooids and is typically found hidden at the bottom of rivers and lakes.

The specimen found recently was plucked from a lagoon at the southern end of Stanley Park in Vancouver, British Columbia after being spotted due to the low water level.

It is the first time a bryozoan has been found in the region and the discovery could mean that the species has started to spread northward as a result of warmer global temperatures.
Given how difficult they typically are to spot however it's possible they've been there for a while.

"I think we're near the northern limit of them," said biology professor Ian Walker from the University of British Columbia. "With warming climate, they might migrate somewhere farther north."

"I can only really speculate how they might have spread."

Source: National Geographic | Comments (8)

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by jarjarbinks 5 years ago
that's why i dont swim in natural water
Comment icon #2 Posted by ChrLzs 5 years ago
I don't want to be immodest.. but..  as soon as I saw 'blob' in the thread title, I bet on bryozoans!  When I used to work in the marine sciences, these and the closely related colonial ascidians were by far the most common thing brought to us by beachcombers asking 'what the heck is this stuff?'  A lot of them used to wash up on local beaches in South Australia.  It's worth doing a Google Image search on them, just to get an idea of the weird and wonderful forms and colors they can take.
Comment icon #3 Posted by Daughter of the Nine Moons 5 years ago
They kind of do look like alien brains
Comment icon #4 Posted by khol 5 years ago
The diversity/forms of life on this planet never cease to amaze me.
Comment icon #5 Posted by switchopens 5 years ago
Comment icon #6 Posted by Hammerclaw 5 years ago
Looks like The Flood is forming a Gravemind.
Comment icon #7 Posted by OverSword 5 years ago
Looks delicious
Comment icon #8 Posted by ChrLzs 5 years ago
They are very rarely used for foods..  I once heard a marine biologist describe the texture/flavor as rather like sponge rubber, with a delicate hint of ammonia. Ye-umm.

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