Sometimes, the Pearl IS the Oyster

Yesterday, while visiting the fish store to pick up another porcelain crab, I noticed a strangely-shaped frag of zoanthids in the “cheapie” section of the store. I noticed because zoas rarely grow in geometrically-regular colonies, and even when they do the colony “edges” are uneven, with independent polyps sticking away from the cluster at varying intervals. The colony I noticed was circular (almost ovoid), with sharply defined rounded edges. Upon closer examination, it also had an open mouth along the edge. What I’d found was a rare example of inter-species cooperation: a live oyster overgrown with at least two different

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