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Old Jun 8, 2008, 7:51 PM   #1
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I finally got around to finishing up the shots I took when we were in Monterey. Here are a couple of beach and shell pictures I took. I continue to be impressed with the K20.

Sand dollar shell, K20 and Viv 105mm macro:



Closer:



The inside of a sand dollar:



Playing on the beach, K20, DA*50-135:



Washed up driftwood, K20 DA12-24:



The funny thing about the sand dollar is that I'm used to findingshells on the beach. What surprised me was the live sand dollar display at the Monterey Aquarium. For some reason I assumed that they would lie flat on the sand, like the shells that watch up on the beach. However, that's not at all the way they live. This isn't a very good picture, but it shows that they live on one end, not flat. Thought that was really interesting.


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Old Jun 8, 2008, 8:42 PM   #2
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Exquisite detail on no.2 and really nice composition on the piece of driftwood! Thanks for taking us along on your travels!

Jay
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Old Jun 8, 2008, 10:43 PM   #3
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I totally agree with Jay. #2 is fantastic. And, the driftwood is a great shot. You should submit those to the Pentax Photo Gallery.

I've got to quit coming here and looking at photos. I'm trying to figure out how to get the K20. Although, I think it'sout of the question now. We just bought a new car two weeks ago. Went to eat at McDonald's tonight after a trip to the beach so we could afford it and the gas. The K20 is going to have to be a dream of mine for a while. Maybe when the next generation comes out, the K20 will drop!

I'll just enjoy your photos in the meantime. Keep posting. Especially Monterey.

Patty

p.s. That was interesting about the sand dollars. We used to find them on the beach here when we first moved here. Haven't seen any in years. But, I never realized they lived standing up on end.

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Old Jun 9, 2008, 12:41 AM   #4
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Thanks a lot for these outstanding pictures. I also always wondered how a live sand dollar looked, actually I thought of asking you before I had scrolled down to the aquarium picture. But what kind of animal is it really? Related to sea urchins or sea stars? Penolta, can you chime in on this?

Kjell
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Old Jun 9, 2008, 6:07 AM   #5
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Quote:
on the beach, K20, DA*50-135:
I love the light in this one and why is driftwood so melancholy ?
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Old Jun 9, 2008, 4:57 PM   #6
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bilybianca wrote:
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Thanks a lot for these outstanding pictures. I also always wondered how a live sand dollar looked, actually I thought of asking you before I had scrolled down to the aquarium picture. But what kind of animal is it really? Related to sea urchins or sea stars? Penolta, can you chime in on this?

Kjell
Kjell, sand dollars are really nothing more than flattened Sea Urchins, so shaped so that they can burrow shallowly beneath the surface, and plow along in the sand gathering organic matter. This particular sand dollar (Dendraster eccentricus, so named because ofthe eccentric arrangement of the features on its surfaceand itsasymmetrical shape --a loss of radial symmetry --as shown in Harriet's good first photo), is peculiar to the West Coast of North America, and is unique in that isalso capable of removing small particles and organisms from the water as it flows over its body by trapping them in mucus that covers the spines (a type of filter-feeding known as suspension feeding). The mucus is then conducted in strandsalong the grooves onthe surface to the mouth. These sand dollars can erect themselves in the sand, orienting themselves with the currents as the water flows over them. Their densely packed aggregations are thought to have some hydrodynamic significance in enhancing their ability to gather food. This is not your typical sand dollar -- similar sand dollars that are more typcally symmetrical (round) are incapable of standing erect in this manner.

Probably more than you wanted to know, but itshould beinteresting, nonetheless.
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Old Jun 9, 2008, 6:18 PM   #7
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penolta wrote:
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Probably more than you wanted to know, but itshould beinteresting, nonetheless.
The day I decide I have no interest in learning more is the day I'm prepared to die. Not there yet.

Thanks a lot for this, I found a few sand dollar shells (shouldn't it be skeletons, really?)on a beach in Costa Rica 20+ years ago, learnt the name but never knew what they really were till now. I don't think we have them in Europe, at least I've never seen any and I have walked a lot of beaches from Portugal to Sweden.

Kjell
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Old Jun 9, 2008, 7:12 PM   #8
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Quote:
(shouldn't it be skeletons, really?)
Yes, an internal or endoskeleton, actually, and not an external or exoskeleton (shell). The distinction is rather technical, involving the method of embryonic development, but that is another tale for another day.
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Old Jun 9, 2008, 9:07 PM   #9
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Thank you for the lesson, Penolta. I have always loved sand dollars. Now I am even more intrigued.

Patty
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Old Jun 9, 2008, 11:50 PM   #10
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I'm another one who wants to thank you for the explanation, thats one reason why I love hanging around here.

I was really surprised when I saw them alive. I had no idea that they were so fuzzy, either. In fact, I had never really thought of how they would look alive and assumed that these were shelled creatures, like clams, not endoskeleton (a new word for me - I told you I was hopeless at anything biological when I was in school). It was obvious when I saw them alive, though.
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