Hollywood Amphipod

ALIEN IS ALIVE!

…but this real-life version of Alien from the half-billion-dollar movie franchise isn’t even an inch long and lives in the ocean.

Phronima, a hyperiid amphipod related to shrimps, crabs, barnacles, krill, and other crustaceans, is found just about everywhere in the oceans. Though their offspring are not about to burst through anyone’s chest like Alien did, Phronima‘s method of reproduction is totally worthy of its own horror movie franchise: a female uses her claws to catch a gelatinous animal called a salp, then eats the salp’s guts, chews holes in either end of the salp to create a tube, lays her eggs inside, and then drives the whole thing around like a minivan.

Freaky! But pretty cool, huh?

One Response to “Hollywood Amphipod”

  1. Helen Scales says:

    Definitely freaky and cool!

    Those Hyperiid amphipods sure do get up to some crazy tricks… another species is the chap I wrote about a while back, that grabs onto a nasty-tasting sea angel (the sea snails that lost their shells and swim through open ocean beating their little wings) and carries it around as a live body guard to fend of predators.

    http://theseamonster.net/2011/04/sea-angels/

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