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Slimy sea creatures invade California beach

9:53 AM, Jun 11, 2012   |    comments
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An untrained eye would likely not realize the weird squishy blobs are in fact living animals, not coconuts or rocks.

Marine researcher Kerstin Wasson says she has seen sea hares the size footballs during past explorations of Elkhorn Slough, but the pack she found this week were three times that size.

They were also laying eggs and reproducing.

The ugly marine animals are not picky about who they mate with because they are hermaphrodites.

Their eggs look like yellow noodles and take more than a week to hatch after they are laid.

Sea hares are far from being soft and fuzzy like bunnies, so how did they get their name?

The name derives from their rounded body shape, as well as from their two long rhinophores that project upwards from their heads like rabbit ears.

Wasson described sea hares, also known as sea slugs, as red-mottled creatures, ornamented with frilly flaps and perky antennae.

When they are upset or disturbed, sea hares will squirt red or purple ink like squids.

(Copyright © 2012 NBC Universal, All Rights Reserved)

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