News Article

News Article

Strange Rock is Actually a Living Creature


Pyura chilensis

Before I ever got a cat, a dog or a mouse, the first pet I ever owned was a pet rock.  His name was Mercatzer, and he hung out on my desk with me every day of school.  He was super cute, with the kindest eyes a child has ever painted onto an inanimate object.  I'm not sure whatever happened to Mercatzer, but he will always have a special place in my heart, as all childhood pets forever do.

While the idea of having a rock for a pet is obviously a pretty silly one looking back, there actually is a certain type of rock that is a living being, just as cats and dogs are living beings.  Nonsense, you say?  Well then prepare to have your mind blown!

As per the website Secrets of the Fed, the world's most bizarre rock goes by the name Pyura chilensis, and it actually contains skin, blood, muscles, guts and even a digestive tract inside of it.  The alien-looking rocks eat by inhaling water and filtering out the microalgea, followed by an exhalation of the water.  Born male, the strange creatures become hermaphrodites at puberty, reproducing by a process called 'selfing,' where they spew both sperm and eggs into the water.  Can't make this stuff up!

Found off the coast of Chile and Peru, locals actually eat the innards of these unique rocks, which are apparently quite tasty.  Check out a video of their preparation below, which is sure to make you think twice about rocks, and their status as inanimate objects!