Blind Shrimp - on the Road to Speciation
Dr Abe V Rotor
Living with Nature School on Blog
Paaralang Bayan sa Himpapawid (People's School on Air) with Ms Melly C Tenorio
738 DZRB 8 to 9 evening class, Monday to Friday
Blind Shrimp. This microscopic Crustacean is similar to a specimen found living in deep open wells in Sinait, Ilocos Sur, by Professor Juan Campos and the author in 1979. A classical example of speciation, this species has forever lost eyesight, now replaced by super sensitive tactile sense. Its presence in a number of wells in the area suggests that there is a common underground river or aquifer through which this creature can pass, using a well-developed appendage which works like a catapult.
I let the rope down as I peered,
and down the bucket disappeared;
the well is bottomless it seemed,
'til the rope went forever limb.
I felt the bucket full and bound,
as it went down without a sound,
until it hit a hidden spring,
as I hoped for a prize to bring.
Through the microscope’s aperture,
appeared a frail and blind creature,
with a long antennae for vision
and a springtail for action.
Equally blind I could have been,
had I not with inner eye seen
the little monster in the dark,
counterpart of Jurassic Park.
For a lost lamb Nature pleases
to make it a new species
now different from its own kind,
orphaned – and forever blind.~
From Sunshine on Raindrops by AV Rotor, Megabooks 2000; acknowledgment: adapted from photo by Nick Baker, Google, Wikipedia