Strange Sea Creature Invades U.S. Pacific Coast

Kamie Berry | June 29th, 2017

Hordes of mysterious sea creatures have been invading the west coast of the United States, from California to Alaska. No, they aren’t some scary shark species or giant squid. The strange aquatic animals are actually pyrosomes, which are more commonly known as “sea pickles” to the general public.

A sea pickle is not an individual organism. Each one is made up of colonies of thousands of multicellular organisms, called zooids. These zooids come together to form a bumpy, tubular creature that resembles a gelatinous, almost transparent, pickle. Though many are only a few inches long, they can reach up to sixty feet in length under the right conditions.

thenypost.files.wordpress.com/

Not much is known about the sea pickle, but scientists believe they feed by filtering phytoplankton, which is microscopic algae that floats in the ocean. The most interesting thing about them is that they are bioluminescent, so you can see them glowing at night in the Pacific Ocean.

Sea pickles are not dangerous to people, unlike the similarly squishy jellyfish, to which they are not related. They have, however, put a significant dent in the fishing industry from Oregon to Alaska. They have become so numerous that a recent five-minute trawl by researchers picked up nearly 60,000 of the rubbery creatures. They cause trouble for fishermen when they clog up fishing gear. The problem has gotten so bad that many commercial fishermen have had to find new areas to fish for species like salmon and halibut.

The animals are not native to the waters off the United States. Their true habitat is in tropical waters further south, near places like Australia. But climate change has caused their home waters to become too warm to support them, so they have drifted north. The same warming phenomenon has led to problems for other sea life, as well, such as an increase in strandings of sea lions.

There is some concern that these out-of-place animals could harm the environment of the United States’ Pacific Coast. It is possible that their unusually large numbers could consume too much of the phytoplankton in the area, which could kill off native species, including krill, which also eat the tiny organisms. This could in turn affect whales and seabirds who depend on the krill for their food.

Scientists are also concerned that the sea cucumbers could experience a massive die-off, since they are now in waters not meant to support them. Such a mass of decaying matter could deplete the oxygen in the water, creating a dead zone. There is already such a dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico that was caused by large numbers of algae and plankton dying at the same time.

For the time being, researchers are doing all they can to learn more about the species, as their prior rarity have made them difficult to study. It is hoped that they can figure out why they have migrated so far north and that they can determine how to mitigate any damage they may cause to ecosystem of America’s Pacific coast.

Next Article
  • Giant Artificial Glaciers Growing In The Desert

    One smart engineer from a small remote village in Indian has put his engineering skills to the test and decided to counter-effect the problems being caused by global warming. A global and immense problem for one engineer to tackle, but Sonam Wangchuk is up for the fight. His solution is very simple, create artificial glaciers...

    Read More
  • The Flower That Will Kill You With A Smile

    When one hears the phrase satanic grin, you may think of the DC Comics The Joker’s laugh as he executes a deadly plan. That sardonic grin is well known across the whole world, a grin that comes hand in hand with death. The corners of your mouth go up really far on each side and...

    Read More
  • The Deadly Dynamite Tree

    There is actually a tree that exists covered in poisonous spikes which is capable of dropping exploding dynamite fruit on your head. And to make matters worse the explosions launches spikes & seeds to launch out into the air at over 150 miles per hour, sending them a good 100 feet. ...

    Read More
  • Two Chinese Woman Jump Off A Bridge To Decide True Love

    A young man was put to the test and found himself facing a very difficult situation, his current girlfriend and ex-girlfriend jumped off a bridge to find out who he would save. To say he was confused that two grown women had thrown themselves into a river would be an understatement, but that is what...

    Read More
  • The Raptor Of The Skies That Views Humans As Prey

    For most people living in the western world or any relatively urban area, being eaten by an animal sounds like a story you would only read about in Africa. It sounds like a story that would only happen in a horror tale or during a fantasy story. But not so long ago, being eaten by...

    Read More
  • The Australian Bushranger Who Was A Master Prison Escapist

    One Australian bushranger by the name of Joseph Johns had a very interesting talent: no cell or prison could hold him. In fact, he escaped from prison on so many occasions the authorities became frustrated and built him a special cell that was tailored to keep him inside. The governor even came and checked the...

    Read More
  • Romania Home To The Living And Growing Rocks

    These mysterious rocks that appear to be living entities in Romania continue to grow & grow, defying all the odds and confusing biologists around the world. They really do appear to be something that is impossible: stones that move and grow. Locals refer to them as Trovants and they have confused experts all around the...

    Read More
  • Chuuk Lagoon The Biggest Underwater Graveyard

    If you happen to like diving with wrecks and skeletons then you may want to check out Chuuk Lagoon on your next trip. Previously known as Truk Lagoon, this was a main Japanese naval base during the Second World War. It was home to a huge portion of the Japanese fleet and was their main...

    Read More