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Monday, July 15, 2013

Crabby, Buggish Things

I've loved finding new critters and trying to get decent pictures of them.  Mammals seem to be in short supply here (Sam has glimpsed a tiny deer; I glimpsed a squirrel; we've seen 1 chipmunk). Many bugs are too fast for me or won't sit still for a decent picture.  So, crabs and some of their bug friends are the main features here.

At low tide, we've seen scattered 1" holes just above the water line, like someone jammed a broomstick into damp sand.  We've dug about 6" down and found nothing.  Weird.  So, I did some searching on-line and learned that these are holes of sand crabs; if you dig a big hole a few inches away, toward the water, you'll catch them.  And, to our great delight, we did.  When we let them go, they would either scootch their butts into the sand, flinging loose sand with their front claws as they buried themselves, or they would sideways run to another (presumably occupied) hole and slip sideways down that.

 Early on, we believed that the critters skittering all over the damp rocks and garbage on the beach were cockroaches.  Then we began thinking they might be baby prawns or something more sea-food-y.  But, again thanks to the internet, we now know these are "marine isopods," otherwise known as..."beach cockroaches" or "rock lice."  Nice.  I believe I caught these two isopods in the midst of a intimate moment. 

(3) Near the left side of this picture, you'll see a speckled fish with its tail waving out of the water.  Four of these dancers caught our attention as they fed on stuff at the bottom of tide pools; when the kids chased them, they sped away like any normal fish.  If your aquarium fish does the tail-up thing, it's sick; it seems normal for these.

(4) The camera and computer hardly capture the dazzling yellow of this 2" damselfly.  When it's flying, you can't see its wings, so it's like a bright piece of self-propelled plastic in the air.

(5) A reddish-orange spider (with light green butt), dangling from the car this morning.

(6) Nick, Sam and I went to Jukdo Market on Sunday to buy some fish.  More on a separate post, but I couldn't help but include this shot of a vendor pushing his snow crabs (very alive, but the claws are banded).  For 50,000 won (about $45), he would kill and prepare these for us to eat.
Some folks are serious about big crabs here....

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