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Marine alien

The specimen that appears to be an alien straight out of a movie is nothing more than a marine worm found in the São Sebastião canal along the coast of São Paulo.  It belongs to the species Hesione picta and was photographed in a laboratory with a stereoscopic microscope using a dark-field technique combined with incident light.  The image won third place in the 2013 annual Nikon Small World photomicrography competition (  “My intention was to get a good photographic record of the species for instructional and publication purposes as well as for possible use in field guides,” says biologist Alvaro Esteves Migotto of the Center for Marine Biology at the University of São Paulo (CEBIMar-USP).

Photo submitted by Alvaro Esteves Migotto of CEBIMar-USP. 

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