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orange-speckled snail

Eating its way up the food chain

An orange-speckled snail, Cyphoma gibbosum, munches its way up one of its favorite meals, a purple gorgonian with brown grass-like polyps named Biareum asbestinum, known locally as “dead man’s fingers” because of its knobby, branched appearance. This photo--taken at 15 feet depth at Lee Stocking Island, Bahamas--is the subject of a recent paper on the PLoS One Web site.
(Photo by Kristen Whalen, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

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