What In The Woods is That?

Our biweekly guessing game!

Whatever draws us into the forest—be it birdwatching or logging, hiking or hunting—all of us are unified by the sense of wonder we feel in the outdoors. The forests, fields, and streams of our region are full of mystery, and if you stop and look closely, you’ll see all sorts of oddities.

Below find a picture of one such woodlands curio. Guess what it is and you’ll be eligible to win a Season's Main Events Day Calendar. A prize winner will be drawn at random from all the correct entries. The correct answer, and the winner’s name, will appear when the next column is posted.

This Week’s Entry: What In the Pond Is That?

This week, a WITPIT (What In The Pond Is That?). Ben Haubrich spotted this organism attached to the bottom (about a foot deep) of Scoby Pond in New Hampshire while out kayaking with friends. He pulled it up to get a good photo. “And we did find others, in fact many of them on an old, submerged pine tree,” adds Haubrich, who was able to positively identify them. Can you?

What In the Pond Is That? Image

Answer

This is a colony of bryozoa (“moss animals”) called Pectinatella magnifica. “The colony is made up of tiny filter feeders that retract into the gelatinous mass when spooked,” explains Ben Haubrich. Learn more about these “blobs” here and here.

This week’s contest winner was Carol Kulp

Visit the What in the Woods is That? archive…