2018/9/21  
Heart sea urchins found en masse along Kenting seabed (2018/07/11)
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  • 英文 English 
    Heart sea urchins found en masse along Kenting seabed (2018/07/11)

    Divers have recently stumbled upon a large population of heart sea urchins on the seabed of Kenting. Heart sea urchins are common along Taiwan's southwest coast, but they're rarely seen in such huge numbers. Experts aren't certain what's behind the massive gathering, but some suspect that the sea urchins' predators have been removed in large numbers, setting off a population boom.

    It’s an astonishing sight: an army of sea urchins marching along the seabed, each looking as if it were wearing a tiny helmet. Look closer and you can see their many thin spines. These are the Maretia planulata, commonly referred to as heart sea urchins. They were found in huge numbers on the ocean floor of Kenting’s Houbihu around June and July of last year, but the gathering dispersed in the space of a month. This summer, the spiny creatures have come back in droves.

    Tsai Yung-chun
    Taiwanese Coral Reef Society
    They’re still wandering around in that area over there. They’ve been there a few days now, foraging for food.

    Voice of Lee Kwen-shen
    National Museum of Natural Science
    Generally speaking, sea urchins gather during reproduction. Another explanation could be that their predators have been removed in large quantities, leading to a population boom.

    Marine experts say that the spines of the heart sea urchin are not hard, and coming into contact with one isn’t necessarily dangerous. But human contact could be dangerous for the delicate sea urchin, experts say, reminding divers that if they see one, it’s best to leave it be.
    中文 Chinese  
    大批海膽遷移屏東後壁湖海域 學者:為了覓食

    有潛水愛好者六月間在後壁湖海域潛水時,意外發現大批海膽遷移的景象。這種扁仙壺海膽,常見於台灣西南沿海,不過很少像這樣集體出現。由於國際上少有學者長期研究這種海膽,目前懷疑可能是為了覓食,或天敵減少,才大爆發

    一個個像戴著鋼盔的海膽大軍,在海底移動。拉近距離看,牠們身上都帶著一根根的細棘刺),牠們是扁仙壺海膽,去年六七月間,就被發現曾經大量集體出現在後壁湖海域,大約一個月的時間就消失,沒想到今年再度出現

    [[中華民國珊瑚礁學會理事 蔡永春]]
    “牠們還是在那邊繞,對已經繞了好幾天了在那邊覓食。”

    [[聲源:國立自然科學博物館博士 李坤瑄]]
    “(一般海膽)生殖的時候會聚集,另外一個就是說可能牠的捕食者,被大量抓走後牠可能會大量爆發。”

    專家表示,這種海膽棘刺並不硬,萬一戲水時遇上,應該也不至於對人類有危害,反倒是牠很脆弱,提醒民眾不要任意抓捕。
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