Natures wonders: Sea Horse Tails (Introduction)

by David Turell @, Wednesday, April 01, 2015, 01:44 (1785 days ago) @ David Turell

Many sea horses have tails which can grip stalks of plants. No other aquatic animal like this:

"The research team used thousands of 3D points from the computer model to quantify and map the seahorse's unique armor and the muscular and skeletal system within. They then compared the anatomy of the tail to that of other fish species within the seahorse's family, some of which do not have tails that bend or grasp.

"'We hypothesized that the variation in the grasping species would be much less than non-grasping fish because it would require certain building blocks to construct a tail that is flexible and rigid at the same time," said Adriaens. "To our surprise, we found differences in the ways a grasping tail was made, based on the same skeletal and muscular elements. Although a grasping tail is highly exceptional for a fish, it evolved multiple times independently within the family that seahorses belong to.'"

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