California Spiny Lobster

Panulirus interruptus:

When you look at the California spiny lobster, you may notice something missing: the claws! Unlike the east coast Maine lobster, the California spiny lobster does not have any claws. Instead it has lots of spines all over its body to protect itself. Lobsters, like all crustaceans, have an exoskeleton that they need to molt, or shed, every time they grow. It is very common to find lobster molts washed up on beaches with a nearby kelp forest.

California Spiny Lobster

Panulirus interruptus: When you look at the California spiny lobster, you may notice something missing: the claws! Unlike the east coast Maine lobster, the California spiny lobster does not have any claws. Instead it has lots of spines all over its body to protect...

Moray Eel

Gymnothorax mordax: Moray eels are the only “true eel” that you can find in southern California which means they do not have pelvic or pectoral fins. Moray eels are equipped with a set of very sharp teeth as well as a set of pharyngeal teeth in the throat that can...

Purple Sea Urchin

Strongylocentrotus purpuratus: Sea urchins belong to a group of animals called Echinoderms, which means spiny skin. Makes sense, right? This group also includes sea stars, sea cucumbers, sand dollars, and brittle stars. While the sea urchins in southern California do...

Round Ray

Urolophis halleri: Round sting rays are a common visitor to southern California beaches especially during the summer when the water warms up. They are known for having a sharp barb at the end of their tail that can pack a mean punch. Next time you go to the beach,...

Warty Sea Cucumber

Parastichopus parvimensis: The sea cucumber, which is a relative of the sea star and sea urchin, has the ability to regenerate parts of its body. When a sea cucumber feels threatened, it will “throw up” parts of its guts. The sea cucumber can escape and will...

Roundhouse Aquarium Exhibits

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