Hello folks who wonder if the people who toss pennies in the fountain to get their wishes fulfilled truly believe they can influence fate by such a cheap bribe,

What do you want to do when you finish school?

"Travel, I want to travel all around the world, experience different cultures, eat the regional food, make new friends and develop a wider world view. And ultimately increase my Instagram followers count"

Now, such an answer is fine if you are still a young adult, but when you are old enough to start a family (if such a thing is still relevant for today's generation), speaking publicly of being constantly on the move is something frowned upon by our society. Can't you act a little more responsible, they will say. You must settle down.

And settling down is what it did. And boy oh boy, they settled down real good.

Ladies and Gentlemen, meet Barnacles.


Now barnacles at first glance might look similar to the boring bivalves like oysters, clams or mussels. But to see them come to life, you just need them to interact with water.

You see, Barnacles are filter feeders who "settle" down in one place and send out their feeding appendages called "cirri" to catch drifting plankton.


To truly appreciate the beauty of those feeding appendages you have to see them up close.


As these cirri rapidly extend and retract, tiny hairs on these appendages trap the plankton that the waves carry over.


These barnacles have an opening made up of two shell plates called an operculum. (Does that name ring a bell?). So, when there is no water around them or if a predator is lurking nearby, they will close that opening and flip a business sign from "Yes, we're open" to "Sorry we're closed".


Barnacles use a strong adhesive to stick to the surfaces they settle down in. This glue is a closely guarded family secret recipe that scientists are trying to deconstruct since it is 6 times more adhesive than the most adhesive substance humans have ever made. So, in order to remove them from surfaces, you need to use a metal scraper or a putty knife. Once removed they will leave signs of their existence, just like your couch when you move it from the carpet after 6 years of not vacuuming your carpet.


Just like young people who run around before sinking into their couch for their adult lives, the larvae of barnacles are not stuck in one place but rather swim around. These one-eyed larvae are called "Nauplius".

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