Thursday, May 23, 2013

Exploring the Ocean's Less-Familiar Inhabitants pt. 1

 Hello everyone! Today things are going to be just a little bit different. Normally, I give you updates on things happening in my life and then I present a non-fiction article, normally dealing with animals or something else in nature. But instead, today we are having a guest writer! But we'll get to that later, first, let's do some updates:

The first episode of my upcoming stop-motion series, "Planet of the Dinosaurs", which as you will recall is entitled, "Out of Africa" is nearing completion! It stands at about 85% finished! I expect to have it completely done by the 30th of this month. I'm so glad that I'm almost finished with this first episode because I will finally be able to see my hard-work completed.

If you've been reading my recent posts, you will note that I am writing about the updates for the upcoming movie known as Jurassic Park IV. Let's recap what we've learned about the movie in the past few months:
  1. It's supposed to be a sequel.
  2. A new scary dinosaur is making an appearence
  3. It's not coming out on June 14, 2014 as originally planned due to major script changes
  4. It's taking place on Isla Nublar, the island of the first movie
  5. Colin Trevorrow is directing (he's directed movies such as Safety Not Guaranteed)
  6. No mutant dinosaurs are in this movie
Did you notice that I underlined "supposed" in the first fact? This is because in earlier interviews with people working on the movie, it was stated that Jurassic Park IV (JP4) was supposed to be a sequel. But now this is put into question based on a recent interview with one of the main actors in the first Jurassic movie, Sam Neil. He portrayed the paleontologist Dr. Alan Grant. In the interview Sam stated that:
"I'm told it's [JP4] a big reboot, a total rejig."

He also said that since he believes its a reboot, he probably won't get a part in the movie because the movie-makers will want a fresh start with new actors. Now it's believed that if this is a reboot, the movie will still follow the same storyline as the original so that its sequels are not obsolete. However, Sam also admitted that he hasn't seen the final script that the director and a few of the film's writers revised. So Sam could have gotten some of the wrong information. I don't know for sure, but it's possible (and hopefully it's true) that the older script was the reboot, and the newer script is an actual sequel. I was kind of looking forward to a sequel considering we've already been waiting 11 years for it. Only time will tell whether Jurassic Park IV is a remake or not. Hopefully not though! Here is more information about the interview:

Now, my friends, it is time for today's nonfiction article by a guest writer! Today's guest writer is Joy Hammond, a friend from the church I attend, and she wrote about some of the lesser-known inhabitants of the ocean world. Here is her article:

Have you ever noticed the beautiful chirping sound a cricket makes late in the night or watched as an ant picked up a huge crumb of bread to bring it back home? Have you taken time to stop and watch nature around you?  Well guess what, the most amazing things are all in your backyard if you stop and look around! I'm sure most of you all have been to the beach. You've all had your time, building sand castles, tanning on a beach chair, or suffering on the waves. I'm sure you she all collected seashells every once and awhile. Have you ever wondered about what creatures lie within the sea? There are millions of miles of ocean to explore and the waters get deeper as you go in. 

Did you know that there are so many different sea creatures living in the sea that scientists have hardly just begun searching for! That's right. Because you see, there are so many unknown creatures near the bottom of the ocean floor! But these animals aren't as boring as they might look at first glance, God created these animals survive in the environment they live in. Those sea creatures that live near the bottom, tend to illuminate themselves, which is amazing for both scientists and the public.

There are five creatures that I'm going to talk about, but I'm only doing two for now: Barreleyes, glass squids, Transparent Sea Cucumbers, moon jellies, and predatory tunicates.

Glass squids are different than the average squid, they do not have the stinging tentacles of some other invertebrates (e.g. jellyfish) so they have to hide for their lives! As a baby squid, they live at the surface of the ocean but their transparent skin camouflaged them from predators, such as birds. As it grows, the glass squid moves deeper into the ocean, where there are larger predators but it still has camouflage. The most amazing  thing about this creature is that it can cancel out its own shadow with the small lights under its eyes, making it undetected in the ocean depths!

This is a little Glass Squid, as you can see, it gets its name from its translucent body. The only thing not transparent in these little guys is the cigar-shaped digestive gland (yes, that's in its stomach!)
Another sea creature is the Transparent Sea Cucumber! Average sea cucumbers live on the ocean's surface searching for food. They are constantly in danger as it moves only an inch per minute. Most sea cucumbers use camouflage to protect them from sea predators, the Transparent Sea Cucumber uses a different tactic...SURPRISE! This species of sea cucumbers was found in the Gulf of Mexico. When they sense danger, the Transparent Sea Cucumber, flips its tentacles out of its tail and over itself, looking like its wearing a cape. Then the tentacles propel the sea cucumber to a different location where they start digging again.

A sea cucumber, keep in mind that these animals aren't nearly as tasty as the food cucumber!
         These creatures are just a few of thousands that live here on earth. All you have to do to meet some is stop, look around, and be patient.

What did you think of Joy's article? Please leave comments to voice your opinion!

I hope you enjoyed this article. I can't wait till next week so that, not only can we learn more about the wonderful world God made for us to enjoy, but we can also look at the first episode of "Planet of the Dinosaurs"! See you then!

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PS 4: Be sure to comment on the latest stop-motion movies too, this will help me improve them.

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