Mussels can colonise hard surfaces quite rapidly and completely.
This starfish – as many other species – protects her offspring by carrying them around until they are big enough to life on their own.
Fossil shell of an Arctica islandica clam that lived about 3 Million years ago (recovered from Tjörnes Beds, Iceland). There are petrified sandy sediments in the lower part of the shell and carbonate crystals grown during petrification in the upper part. This shell still carries information on Pliocene environmental conditions.
The bivalve Arctica islandica can attain up to 500 years of age, and around 100 years are quite common. As in trees, the shell forms one growth band each year.
Heat, ice and life: The remote Saunders Island (57°47’ South, 26°27’ West, South Sandwich Islands) is an active volcano covered by ice and snow. Nevertheless, there is life: each little black dot on this photo is a chinstrap penguin! (Photo taken during Polarstern expedition ANT XIX/5 in 2002)