Mark (mahka42) wrote in aquamarines,

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I was on the Florida Gulf coast last weekend, and found these things all over the beach. I have no idea what they are. They seemed like they would be gelatinous, but a little poking and prodding proved that they were actually rather solid. I thought it might be some sort of echinoderm after looking at its skin, but I couldn't locate tube feet or a mouth, even after turning them over (the other side looks exactly the same). Anybody know what they are?

Mystery thing

There were also a bunch that were more yellow in color.

I'm pretty sure the purple thing it's attached to is a sponge of sorts.

Larger versions (and more) of the pictures are at

x-posted to a few bio/marine bio communities
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Hmm. your pics aren't working, but I'm assuming it's just someone's egg-case. Most likely some invert worm... I'll check back to see if the pics are working later.
alright, that is not what I thought it was going to be... I can ask a few professors when I get back off break if you'd like?
that would rock. i emailed my old invert bio professor, but she didn't know what it was either (wrong ecosystem)
yeah, I can ask my invert prof when I get back. (I go to school in Tampa, so he should know...)
Okay, so I asked, and my invert professor said is was a colonial ascidian. like a tunicate, more specifically like a sea pork. it's a urochordate.
ooo, awesome. so a tunicate...urochordata...interesting.......