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Giant Brown Kelp
Macrocystis pyrifera

A kelp strand spirals in rhythm to the ocean currents. The kelp bulbs, filled with carbon monoxide, keep the individual fronds raised to the surface where they can receive sunlight.

Catalina Island, California
 
Sea Facts:

Kelp, a type of algae, is the fastest growing plant in the sea, growing 2 feet a day under the ideal conditions. Algin (kelp extract) is used in ice cream as a thickening agent.

Kelp forests are an entire ecosystem unto themselves, sheltering snails, starfish, crabs, sea cucumbers and other creatures, as well as providing a food source for animals that feed on algae.

 

Kelp Spiral

 
         
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