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Jul 22 2013

Scenes of violence and horror

Think about what you’re seeing in this video of the floor of the Sea of Japan: through most of it, small animals are getting gouged and shredded and dragged down into sarlacc pits and chewed up alive or swallowed whole. When the cephalopods show up, it’s a relief — they’re just looking pretty onscreen (or in the case of the baby cuttles, looking adorable).

OK, and the orange frogfish with her hopeful suitor toddling along was also nonviolent. But it’s mostly a horrible world!

15 comments

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  1. 1
    Silva

    Aw, now I want to give my platyfish a big hug. Although to tell the truth. they tend to die a drawn-out, undignified, useless death that lasts up to a week. A bit of irony, there – we protect our pets from death, only for them to die the most miserable death available.

    Okay, that baby cuttlefish was about the cutest thing ever.

  2. 2
    w00dview

    That footage was incredible. I can never get tired of the constantly shifting colours of cuttlefish skin. And that ribbon eel exuded a deadly elegance in its strike whilst the bobbit worm dragging its prey under the sand made me glad I’m not a fish! But my favourites were by far the frogfish. Easily one of the most successful predators amongst all the fish and the two males following the female was adorable. It was like they were going for a relaxing stroll. Life underwater can’t all be about staying alive, you know!

  3. 3
    cyberweez

    Bobbit worms are horrible creatures….I’m gonna dream about those little bastards for a month now I’m sure!

  4. 4
    rq

    Cephalopods have the most captivating eyes.

  5. 5
    René

    If I recall correctly this is not in Japan, but in the North of Celebes (Sulawesi, Indonesia).

  6. 6
    Rumtopf

    Omg the orange frogfish, I love them <3
    @Silva
    I've had that happen with certain individuals in a shoal, just seemingly failed to thrive while the rest were fat, happy and active. I'd euthanised them, if treating for parasites etc didn't work, before it got too bad, with clove oil. It's a must have for fishkeepers.

  7. 7
    boskerbonzer

    This video says the bobbit worm has no brain. Can that be right? That would make them something like a venus flytrap, which I could understand, but some of the polychaetes can crawl around in search of food, so they must have some sort of rudimentary brain. Right? Wrong?

  8. 8
    microraptor

    They didn’t mention another trait of the bobbit worm that makes it even more terrifying: they’re covered in bristles that can cause permanent numbness in humans.

  9. 9
    Silva

    @Rumtopf: Thank you! I have some clove oil, but I’ve never heard of using it on fish. I shall try it next time. I think my last spate of deaths was due to old age; they never had any sign of disease, and they all had a good run (and tons of offspring) before they went.

  10. 10
    erie

    boskerbonzer, lacking a brain is not the same as lacking a nervous system. Jellyfish also have no brains, but they aren’t like plants, because they have neural networks. A brain is one part of a central nervous system, but an organism can be an animal, move and react to stimuli just fine with a decentralized nervous system. Even when an organism does have a central nervous system, it could have a cephalic ganglion without the ganglion counting as a brain. To be considered a brain, an organ should meet a number of requirements: it should subserve the whole body (not only one segment), should have different parts with specialized functions, should have mostly interneurons rather than motor or sensory neurons, etc. An animal can easily have a nervous system and can even have a cephalic ganglion without having any organ which really has the characteristics of a brain.

  11. 11
    chigau (違う)

    I didn’t get past the word “evil”.

  12. 12
    chigau (違う)

    OK
    I watched the whole thing.
    Beautiful.
    The narration was disgusting.

  13. 13
    boskerbonzer

    erie – Thank you. I did some quick research before asking that question and wasn’t coming up with anything useful. Your answer is an excellent explanation – thanks again!

  14. 14
    Thumper: Who Presents Boxes Which Are Not Opened

    @microraptor #8

    Well that’s made them yet more creepy. Gah, the Bobbits really freaked me out. They’re really fucking cool :) but creepy none the less.

    I really liked the orange frogfish. You can really see the flipper-like fins which presumably give them their name :)

  15. 15
    Area Man

    Not the Sea of Japan. What looks like Japan in that video is a small island off the coast of Sulawesi in Indonesia.

    /pedant

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