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pjf (2464)

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I run Perl Training Australia [].

I help with Melbourne Perl Mongers.

I spend an awful lot of time talking about Perl, and have had my picture in the Australian newspapers with a camel. That's rather scary.

Journal of pjf (2464)

Wednesday December 28, 2005
07:30 PM

A venomous trip to the beach

[ #28152 ]

A venomous trip to the beach
Yesterday was as beautiful summer day, with sunshine and clear skies the perfect beachgoing weather. Being the holiday season, Jacinta, myself, our friend Kat and daughter Emily all headed off to Williamstown beach for the afternoon.

I had my snorkling gear with me, and went for a bit of a swim around the beach to see what I could find. I had a collection bag with me, mainly to pick up any rubbish found in the water, but also to collect anything particularly interesting that I may find.

My first trip back to shore had me arrive with a pretty sea-shell, which I proudly displayed and from which a small blue-ringed octopus emerged. Yes, within only a few minutes at the beach I had discovered one of Australia's most venomous marine species. Living in Australia is grand!

We all admired the octopus for a little while, and discussed how a single bite causes paralysis and respiratory arrest, and how there is no known antivenom. Indeed, our book on dangerous creatures claims that a single octopus contains enough venom to kill ten adults. An exciting find indeed.

Being careful to stay away from the biting end of the rather annoyed cephalopod, I walked back into the ocean and let it free. The colour changes were quite amazing to watch, the octopus went from an angry blue-ringed pattern to a gorgeous orange as it swam away.

The remainder of the snorkle had me discover a number of old bottles, a golf-ball, a puffer fish, and a skate (images). Overall a most rewarding day.

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