The candy-striped shrimp (Lebbeus grandimanus) is proof that the Aquarium is full of surprises, even for staff members that have been here for…eh …erm… quite a while.
Case in point: Ninon D., the manager of visitor experience, who only discovered this animal after working at the Aquarium for five years.
She says, “If I went five years without noticing it, I’m sure it gets missed by a lot of visitors.”
Not only is this shrimp translucent (except for its brightly coloured stripes), it’s also no longer than your pinky finger.
So with this newfound information, here’s your chance to check out this mini-yet-flamboyant crustacean, which lives on the bodies of sea anemones. No one knows for sure how the candy-striped shrimp is able to avoid the stinging tentacles of its host.
Ninon says by highlighting the candy-striped shrimp this month, she wants to bring attention to the colours found in our local waters. Forget Maui and Cozumel. Grab your snorkeling gear and join me on a B.C. beach – though we’ll have to swim out to a rocky area covered in sea anemones to see this animal.
Look for the candy-striped shrimp in the small exhibit beside the giant Pacific octopus and above the hagfish in the Treasures of the B.C. Coast gallery.
By Karen Horak, writer-editor, content and digital experience at the Vancouver Aquarium.