Now that I have your attention! (you know, sometimes titles just write themselves…though ‘Polypamory’ was a really close runner-up).
The Maldives is renowned for newly betrothed couples consummating their nuptials with a honeymoon celebration. But the very microscopic creatures who built the Maldives over millennia, coral polyps, will be celebrating a honeymoon of their own this week in rather distinctive style. Their rather exotic ‘bedroom’ habits certainly put the ‘moon’ in the ‘honeymoon’. That is according to this month’s Scientific American featuring a piece about Coral Polyp reproduction…
“It is hard to court the opposite sex when you are cemented in place, which explains why polyps—the tiny creatures whose exoskeletons form corals—do not reproduce by mating. Instead they cast millions of sperm and eggs into the sea, where they drift up to the ocean surface, collide, form larvae and float away to form new coral reefs. Polyps may not be picky about their “mates,” but they are sticklers for timing. The polyps in a coral reef will “blow” their eggs and sperm simultaneously in quick frenzies for just one, or maybe a few, consecutive nights a year—and they usually do so shortly after sunset on evenings closely following a full moon…A reef generally picks one day during a full moon in summer to blow, for 20 minutes or so, during the twilight hours.”
I guess if we were going to grant a ‘Best of’ accolade for ‘Reef Romance’ it would have to go to none other than the to Sheraton’s eponymous ‘Full Moon’ resort.
As it happens, this June’s Full Moon offers a special treat as well of an ‘extra long Lunar Eclipse. MSNBC reports “This month’s full moon will pass almost directly through the center of Earth’s shadow on Wednesday in what will be an unusually long total eclipse of the moon, 100 minutes. The next total lunar eclipse of exceptional length will be July 27, 2018, and will last 106 minutes.”
The Full Moon this week rises at 8:14 pm on Wednesday 15th June. It promises to be quite the eventful evening from sea to sky.