Thursday, August 06, 2009

Tentacled Shoggoth Discovered!

Thanks, T. Peter!!
05th August 2009

A mysterious 'alien like' creature horrified holidaymakers after it
washed up on a beach on the Gower Peninsula in Wales.

The writhing mass of tentacles, which measured at least 6ft from end
to end, was described by a zoology expert today as 'like something out
of Doctor Who'.

Hundreds of people flocked to Oxwich Beach near Swansea to catch a
glimpse of the monster.

The mysterious 'alien like' creature measured 3ft long

But fears of a UFO invasion were put to rest as scientists revealed it
was a seething mass of goose barnacles that was swept up from the
depths of the ocean by bad weather.The barnacles - long writhing
stalks or pendulates, tipped with shells - are normally found deep
below the waves, but were washed up clinging to a log.

Professor Paul Brain, of Swansea University, said: 'One child screamed
out that it resembled something from Dr Who and I would have to agree
with her - it made very bizarre viewing.

The mass of writhing tentacles was washed up on Gower Beach

'In fact they were probably the biggest specimens of free-floating
goose barnacles I've seen.

'The log is about two metres long and as thick as a telegraph pole so
I wouldn't be surprised if there were a couple of thousand barnacles
on there.'

Holidaymaker Rebecca Porter said the log was like 'a large living sea

She said: 'The stalk on which the puffin-shaped head sat on was soft
and rubbery and moved like a snake.

'They appeared to be attached to a piece of driftwood but it could
hardly be seen as it was densely covered with these huge tentacles
that opened and closed, thrusting out fronds like uncurling ferns.'

The mass of writhing goose tentacles are reminiscent of the 'Ood' from
Doctor Who

The tentacled creature relies on water motion for feeding - leading to
it frequently being washed up on shore.

The barnacle extends its fan-like array of limbs to catch plankton,
and attaches itself to surfaces by its stalk - leaving it unable to
move from the point it is fixed.

There was also a second barnacle-covered log, measuring around 1ft in
length, which washed up alongside the bigger one.

Professor Brain said: 'They tend to live in the oceans and can attach
themselves to the bottom of ships.

'It's normally found in quite deep water but occasionally they can be
found on debris that has become dislodged from the sea bed and has
washed up on the shore.

'I would think the bad weather caused by the jet stream in the past
month has probably dislodged these barnacle infested logs from their
resting places, giving people a rare look at them for free on the

Professor Brain added: 'They're actually a delicacy in Spain although
I haven't seen any Spanish people trying to chisel them off.

'Back in the old days, people thought barnacle geese hatched from
them. A Welsh monk in the 12th century, Giraldus Cambrensis, even
claimed to have seen geese hatching from them.'

In Portugal and Spain, the barnacles are a widely consumed and
expensive delicacy known as percebes. They have a briny taste and are
served steaming hot with their triangular shells still attached.

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