7 Jun 2013

Oceanic Blog-A-Thon 2013

Welcome one, welcome all!!!

Did you know that over 70% of the Earth's surface is covered by water? This makes our planet quite unique, as its the only one in our Solar System with liquid water. So when do we get to rebaptise the planet "Ocean"? ;o)

Did you know that there are over 250'000 identified marine species? 98% of which live on the ocean floors (benthic species) and only 2% in the water column (pelagic species). Plants, animals, micro-organisms... Plants that range from single-celled algae (phytoplankton) to the prairies of seagrass Posidonia oceanica that carpet parts of the Mediterranean seabed, to the impressive kelp forests along the western coast of North America. Microscopic zooplankton which is eaten by slightly larger krill which in turn is eaten by the largest animal on the planet, the massive blue whale! There are animals that live "stuck" on the ocean floor (corals, sponges etc.), and animals that cross vast distances to get from breeding grounds to feeding grounds each year (humpback whales for example). Life on this planet originated in the oceans and eventually crawled out onto land, and in the oceans we can find species which have been around for millions of years!

Who am I??? I am a...

It's finally here! The day you've all been waiting for! The answer to my World Oceans Day riddle!!! ;o)

First of all I just wanted to give a big thank you to Kim from Snug Harbour Bay whose holiday photos from Sanibel Island gave me the idea to choose this critter, and her daughter Chablis who kindly sent me a series of photos she took so I could use them in this post! :o)

Let's start by reviewing the clues, which I've enhanced with a few links to useful information. Try and figure it out as we go along, no cheating by jumping to the end! :p

1. I am a LIVING FOSSIL! I am very old. I pre-date flying insects, dinosaurs and man.
2. I am a marine animal, with only four species alive today.

6 Jun 2013

Who am I? (5)

It's the final day in the World Oceans Day guessing game!!! And these last three clues pretty much give it all away! You'll get the full scoop on our mystery critter tomorrow during the Oceanic Blog-A-Thon!


13. My first pair of appendages, which I use to place food in my mouth, are called chelicerae. They're present in all my relatives, which is why our subphylum is called the Chelicerata.

14. Some people find my shape reminds them of a horseshoe...

15. My name is a misnomer! I am not a crab!!! (but we are distantly related)


5 Jun 2013

Who am I? (4)

Ready for the next batch of clues in our World Oceans Day guessing game? If you think you know who it is, perhaps these will help you confirm your guess! If not... maybe these will be the ones to guide you to an answer. Good luck!
Remember: you'll get the answer this Friday in time for the Oceanic Blog-A-Thon!

Here are today's clues:

10. I come out at night to eat worms and small molluscs, but hide (usually in the sand) during the day.

11. If I'm a male I'm smaller than the females and my first pair of "legs", the pedipalps, are modified as a grasping appendage so I can hold on to the female during spawning.

12. We (males and females) meet up on the beach during spawning season (May-June). I detect her through the pheromones she releases, and "hold on" to her as she lays the clutches of eggs while I fertilize them.


4 Jun 2013

Who am I? (3)

Day three means three new clues to help you identify the mysterious oceanic critter!
Maybe these will be the ones to help you figure it out?
You'll get the answer on Friday in time for the Oceanic Blog-A-Thon!

Here are your new clues!

7. I have two compound lateral eyes and five simple eyes on my carapace. 

8. I "breathe" (capture oxygen from the water) using book gills (flat, leaflike gills), present on some of my abdominal appendages.

9. I am a true blue-blood! (You can call me "your highness"!) This is because my blood uses hemocyanin instead of hemoglobin to carry oxygen. The copper present in the hemocyanin makes it blue!


Previous clues here and here. New clues tomorrow! 

3 Jun 2013

Who am I? (2)

Day two of our World Oceans Day guessing game, and three new clues to help you identify the mysterious oceanic critter! The riddle will be solved on Friday in time for the Oceanic Blog-A-Thon!

Here are your new clues! (first batch of clues here)

4. I can walk using my five pairs of walking legs. I have an extra pair of cephalothorax appendages which I use to get food to my mouth. These have a special name which I won't share just yet 'cause they might give the whole game away! ;o)

5. I can swim ("upside down"!) using my abdominal plates (fused abdominal appendages)

6. I have a hard dorsal shell called a carapace and a long needle-shaped tailpiece called a telson. In order to grow in size I will have to molt, shed my shell, several times during my life.


Newer clues here.

2 Jun 2013

Who am I? (1)

Since it seemed to be quite popular last year and the year before (follow the links and try to guess!), my contribution to the Oceanic Blog-A-Thon this year is going to be another marine animal guessing game! Five posts with three clues each... feel free to ask questions or guess the answer in the comments!

Friday I'll post the answer and launch the Oceanic Blog-A-Thon. I sure hope you're planning on joining in! ;o)

Now... let the World Oceans Day guessing game begin!!!

1. I am very old. I pre-date flying insects, dinosaurs and man.

2. I am a marine animal, with only four species alive today.

3. My closest living relatives are found on land. (I do have one lesser-known distant cousin who still lives in the ocean like me)


(You didn't think I'd make it easy right at the beginning, did you?) ;o)

More clues here.

1 Jun 2013

Join the Oceanic Blog-A-Thon for World Oceans Day!

Only one week to go until World Oceans Day!!! :o)

Have you made any plans? Checked out the events listed at the World Oceans Day website to see if there's anything taking place near you? Or perhaps created your own event?

I'm sure you been thinking about what to write for the Oceanic Blog-A-Thon next weekend!!! Right?!?!?!
I've finally figured out what my contribution will be from this blog (still have to find time for the post from CrisCrossing the Globe), I'm going to introduce you to a funky oceanic critter... but first you have to try and guess who it is!!! Three clues a day starting tomorrow... good luck! ;o)

Although things have been quiet here on the blog (one of these days I'll have to explain my disappearing act this spring), I have been getting ready for World Oceans Day and the Oceanic Blog-A-Thon! I've submitted it as an official event on the WOD website, hopefully it will appear there soon. And I've created an event page you can join on Facebook! I also learnt how to launch a hash tag on Twitter... I had no idea it was so simple! So you can expect updates on the FB event page and on Twitter via #oceanicblogathon. :o)

And now, time for ...


1. Write a post on your blog on an ocean-related theme any time this week or next weekend. Can be anything you like! Need ideas? Check out posts from previous editions: 2012 - 2011 - 2010 - 2009. Don't have a blog but would like to participate anyway? You can write a guest post on either of my blogs Here and There and Everywhere or CrisCrossing the Globe.

2. Send me the link! Either in a comment under this post, on the Facebook event page, on Twitter or by e-mail (crazycrisblogger atgmailetc. -am trying to avoid the spambots).

3. I will write up an introduction to your post and link up to it here at the Oceanic Blog-A-Thon so other participants and visitors will know where to find it!

4. Remember:
  • Link back to the Oceanic Blog-A-Thon in your post!
  • Go read the other participating posts and leave them a comment!
  • Check back in to the Oceanic Blog-A-Thon several times over the weekend as I'll be updating it each time I get a new submission. (I'll announce updates on Facebook and Twitter)

5. Spread the word!
The more people participate in the Oceanic Blog-A-Thon the more interesting it will be for all of us! Go ahead and use the Oceanic Blog-A-Thon poster above.

6. HAVE FUN!!! :o)

I hope to sea many of you here next weekend! ;o)

What say we end this on a musical note? Deep Sea News posted a series of oceanic songs a while back and this seems like the perfect time to share some of them with you! Enjoy! :o)