Tag: ‘Enoshima’

Time-lapse video: Giant spider crab sheds its shell

22 Jun 2010

Enoshima Aquarium (Fujisawa, Japan) has released some time-lapse footage of a molting Japanese spider crab (Macrocheira kaempferi), whose 3.8 meter (12 ft 6 in) leg span makes it the world's largest arthropod species. The video was shot over a 6-hour period.


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Jellyfish Fantasy Hall (pics)

09 Apr 2009

Enter the Jellyfish Fantasy Hall at Enoshima Aquarium south of Tokyo and you will find yourself surrounded by dazzling swarms of gently pulsating creatures. Here's a look at a few of the species on display there.

Japanese sea nettle --
Japanese sea nettle [+]

Jellyfish, which have inhabited the world's oceans in one form or another for over one billion years, come in a dizzying array of shapes, sizes and colors. One species commonly found in Japanese coastal waters in spring and summer is the Japanese sea nettle (Chrysaora melanaster). When full grown, this jelly can reach up to 1 meter (3 ft) in length with an umbrella measuring 20 centimeters (8 in) in diameter.

Japanese sea nettle -- Japanese sea nettle --
Japanese sea nettle [+] // [+]

The Japanese sea nettle has a relatively strong toxin. If dried and ground into powder, the toxin can irritate the eyes and nose when scattered on the wind. Ninja used to use this jellyfish powder as a weapon, and even today the jellyfish is known in Japan as hakushon-kurage ("sneeze jellyfish").

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Pacific sea nettle --
Pacific sea nettle [+]

The Pacific sea nettle (Chrysaora fuscescens) is one of the world's largest jellyfish, with an umbrella that typically measures up to 50 centimeters wide and tentacles that stretch up to 2 meters (6.5 ft) in length. It has a moderate to severe sting that can cause welts to form.

Pacific sea nettle -- Pacific sea nettle --
Pacific sea nettle [+] // [+]

Found in the northwestern Pacific along the North American coast (and not in Japanese waters), this sea nettle has adapted to the cold California Current.

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Atlantic sea nettle --
Atlantic sea nettle [+]

The Atlantic sea nettle (Chrysaora quinquecirrha) is found in the Atlantic along the North American coast, and like its Pacific cousin, this jelly can inflict a nasty sting. Its semi-transparent body makes it difficult to spot -- a problem both for beachgoers and for the sea nettle's prey.

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Upside-down jellyfish --
Upside-down jellyfish [+]

The upside-down jellyfish (Cassiopea sp.), which has an umbrella that typically grows to about 20 centimeters (8 in) in diameter, is found in shallow waters from the tropics to the subtropics.

Upside-down jellyfish --
Upside-down jellyfish [+]

This jellyfish gets its name from the fact that it is usually seen upside-down on the sea floor, where it feeds on small plankton that drop down from above.

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Moon jellyfish --
Moon jelly [+]

The moon jelly (Aurelia aurita) is probably the world's most widely distributed jellyfish. It is quite commonly found along the shores of Japan. Although it is composed of more than 95% water, it has an amazing ability to quickly heal itself, even after severe injuries. The moon jelly typically grows to a length of 15 centimeters (6 in) from the top of the umbrella to tip of the tentacles, with a diameter of 30 centimeters (1 ft).

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Spotted jelly --
Spotted jellyfish [+]

The spotted jellyfish (Mastigias papua) has a brownish umbrella with white spots. With thick tentacles resembling the arms of an octopus, this creature is known in Japan as tako-kurage, or "octopus jellyfish." The spotted jellyfish gets its color from the algae that lives within its umbrella. This algae produces a type of sugar through photosynthesis that serves as a nutrient for this jellyfish.

Instead of one single mouth, the spotted jellyfish appears to have several smaller mouth openings in its oral arms.

Spotted jelly --
Spotted jellyfish [+]

Though mainly found in the southern Pacific Ocean, the spotted jellyfish is active in Japanese waters from summer to autumn. When full grown, this jellyfish measures about 50 centimeters (1 ft 8 in) from top to bottom and 15 centimeters (6 in) wide.

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Other species found in the Jellyfish Fantasy Hall include the blue jellyfish (Catostylus mosaicus), brownbanded moon jelly (Aurelia limbata), and Amakusa jellyfish (Sanderia malayensis).

Nintendo DS mixed-reality treasure hunt

01 Feb 2008

Treasure Quest Enoshima -- On a small island near Tokyo, people armed with Nintendo DS portable game consoles are scouring the terrain in search of clues that will lead them to a secret treasure. The activity is part of a unique, virtual-meets-real-world game called "Treasure Quest: Enoshima - Treasure of the Dragon," which was developed by Rush Japan, a Tokyo-based company that specializes in planning treasure hunts and tourism-related events.

The free game is open to Nintendo DS owners with the means to travel to Enoshima, a small island (4 kilometers in circumference) in the town of Fujisawa about 50 kilometers south of Tokyo. After picking up the free software, players are sent off to interact with their DS and move about the island in search of clues, which are obtained through both the physical environment and the game console. The game makes use of the DS's wireless capabilities, and at certain key locations on the island where players obtain clues, the on-screen scenery matches that of the physical surroundings. Players can locate the treasure after obtaining all the pieces of the puzzle and putting them together to solve the mystery, which the developers claim is no easy task.

Rush Japan, who developed the game as an innovative way to stimulate tourism, hopes the Nintendo DS's popularity with people old and young will attract a diverse group of players to the island. Their goal was to create a game that both the players and the locals would appreciate.

The treasure hunt is held from 10 AM to 4 PM every day until February 19, and reservations (required) are being accepted online through the Treasure Quest website. (The website and game are in Japanese.)

[Source: Shonan Keizai Shimbun]

Aurora on demand

11 Jul 2006

Aurora generatorResearchers have developed the next best thing for would-be aurora gazers unable to make the trip to a near-polar location -- an aurora generator. The device was developed by Professor Shigeyuki Minami from the Graduate School of Engineering at Osaka City University, who worked with real estate developer Iida Sangyo Co., Ltd.

Beginning August 1, Iida Sangyo plans to fire up the device as the main attraction at its Enoshima Island Spa ("Enospa"), affording visitors the extra luxury of gazing at the aurora while lounging poolside on the second floor.

The aurora is generated within the belly of the machine, where a near-vacuum state is maintained. Electrons collide with oxygen and nitrogen to create colorful light in the same way that naturally occurring auroral light is generated in the earth’s upper atmosphere. One side of the device is made of transparent acrylic resin, allowing viewers to admire the beauty of the artificial aurora contained within. The aurora generator measures 2.2 (H) x 2.8 (W) x 1.4 (D) meters (7 x 9 x 5 feet), though the company claims to have engineered prototypes as large as 3 x 3 meters.

Aurora simulators in the past have relied on techniques such as laser beams that create aurora-like effects, while devices that have relied on electrical discharge in a vacuum have been very small. In addition to being larger and more "real" than previous devices, Iida Sangyo's device does not simply light up -- it emits a shimmering curtain of dynamic multi-hued light consisting of as many as 11 colors.

The company has not revealed exactly what technology is at work in the device.

[Source: Tech-On! via /. Japan]