Breaking from chores, we went to the beach a few days ago to breath the clean, moist sea air. As we walked a short distance ahead, I was attracted by color – a dark yellow and brick red and somewhat circular form on the sand. I approached, witnessed movement and gathered the creature into my hands.
I know, it appears to be smiling…
I wanted to look inside again, but the creature was uncooperative, and this was as far as I could open it using my own strength. Once I let go with my right hand, the creature slowly closed up again. No hurry.
It’s one mass of muscle!
When our dog wasn’t looking, my husband threw it back into the ocean.
Here we have a Giant Gumboot Chiton, or, Great Pacific Chiton. I didn’t see any of the typical plates on it’s back, but then, I may not have noticed.
What’s most fascinating is that this creature hasn’t changed for 50 million years! A chance happening with a prehistoric creature – thrilling!