‘Does anyone know what this is?’ Woman baffled after mysterious alien-looking creature with ‘blood’ oozing out of its body washes up on a beach
- Queensland woman stumbles across ‘alien like’ creature while walking on beach
- The woman took to social media with a picture to find out what the creature was
- It turned out to be one of the more common sea creatures in shallow waters
A woman taking a walk on a beach turned to the internet for help after stumbling across a mysterious alien-like creature that had washed ashore.
The woman said the strange sea creature appeared to have blood oozing out of its body as it lay in the shallows at a Scarborough beach, north of Brisbane.
‘Does anyone know what this is? Found at Scarborough beach with blood coming out,’ she posted on Facebook, according to Yahoo News.
After a number of suggestions including ‘alien poop’ or ultra-valuable ‘whale vomit’, the slimy creature was eventually revealed as a toxic sea hare.
Sea hares are known to ‘ink’ when they feel threatened, releasing an ominous red-coloured toxic chemical into the water to cloud their predator’s vision.
Their skin and digestive tract are also toxic to their predators.
Professor Culum Brown, from Macquarie University’s Department of Biological Sciences told Australian Geographic sea hare were ‘incredibly common’ in Australia.
‘Because they graze on the algae, they take up the pigments and sometimes the toxins that’s found in the algae, and so their colour is really variable,’ he said.
‘That’s obviously an awesome technique to blend into your surroundings.’
He compared them to the common snails without shells, and said their name came from their long tentacles which look like the ears of a hare.
Professor Brown said sea hares were particularly dangerous for inquisitive dogs.
In 2018, three dogs died in Western Australia after licking sea hares.
A woman taking a walk on the beach stumbled across an alien like creature with ‘blood’ oozing out of its body (pictured) before taking to social media to find out what it was
The woman found the strange looking sea creature at Scarborough, north of Brisbane, (pictured) after it had washed up on the shore
WHAT IS A SEA HARE?
The Sea hare is a marine snail, found in shallow water and occasionally in rockpools on the low shore.
They feed on seaweed and it is thought that this is what gives each Sea hare its colour, e.g. green Sea Hares are eating green seaweeds like sea lettuce whilst the reddish-maroon Sea hares are eating red seaweeds.
Sea hares have an internal shell, which is around 4cm long and transparent. Like sea slugs, the Sea hare is a hermaphrodite and they sometimes mate in chains, with an individual acting as both male and female.
They lay eggs in long pink threads, which are deposited on seaweed and look a bit like pink spaghetti.
Source: The Wildlife Trusts
After a number of people quipped at what the creature could be it was eventually revealed as a clade Anaspidea, more commonly known as a sea hare