More reasons why I love the Atlantic Horseshoe Crab…

As I mentioned before, the horseshoe crab is a rather frightening looking creature, however quite the opposite is true, they are the steadfast, strong member of the ocean community. This animal, not only is a vital part of the Atlantic coast food chain, but has remained rather unchanged since before the time of the dinosaurs!

An animal that has been in existence since before the dinosaurs is quite impressive and the main reason I have gotten my 4 year old nephew to learn and love saying the scientific name for the Atlantic Horseshoe Crab, Limulus polyphemus. The “polly-femus” part always cracks him up.

But, seriously, they have remained relatively unchanged and evolved little in 260 million years!

How have they managed this impressive feat?

First of all, it is very difficult for predators to get overturn their tough curved shell and get into the crux of their underbelly!

Secondly, they can go a year without food!

Lastly, they are adaptable and can endure the harshest conditions (temperature and ocean salt levels)!

But we’ve only scratched the surface here. Check back often at beachchairscientist.com for more insight about your favorite beach discoveries.

Comments

  1. Are there any other creatures that have been relatively unevolved for as long a period? And….. how DO they go for that long without food! I need to know that diet secret

Trackbacks

  1. […] } If you do not already know, the Atlantic horseshoe crab is my favorite animal. It just breaks my heart when I am home and see a few crabs stranded along […]

  2. […] habitats of the South Carolina lowcountry. Host Tony Mills demonstrates the best way to track horseshoe crabs in the tidal flats of South Carolina and does a superb job enlightening us on some of the […]

Speak Your Mind

*