New Zealand’s most spectacular sea cucumber is this scarlet creature with delicate tentacles. It contracts from the cucumber shape into a small strawberry-shaped blob when disturbed. It is a deep-sea animal usually living at depths of 1,000 metres, but it is also found in the shallower, dark waters of Fiordland. Unlike most sea cucumbers, this species gives birth to live young. For a few months the female shelters her 70–100 babies under her body.
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NIWA – National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research
Photograph by Jason Moore
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