Wildlife Wednesday: An Exasperating Species
This tropical tunicate goes by the name Microcosmus exasperatus. The name Microcosmus means “little world,” possibly for the vast array of life that can settle on its tunic. We’re not sure how it got stuck with “exasperatus” as its species name, but its ability to grow over all kinds of structures may have exasperated some of the people in the places it’s invaded. This tunicate is found in tropical waters all over the world. SERC marine biologist Brianna Tracy-Sawdey spotted this one off the coast of Panama, at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute.