Additional pumice information – see “comments” below – thanks Chris…..
There has been a lot of pumice washed up along the tide line this year, from tiny pieces to quite large lumps. Often the pumice will have been at sea for long periods and its gritty surface is an ideal landing place for many small floating animals and plants.
This specimens has attracted Goose Barnacles – and goose barnacles ON goose barnacles, two other sorts of barnacle and what looks like some kind of marine worm.
Thanks to Chris Nicholls for the photo
Peter Fullagar – scientist working now in his 54th consecutive year of shearwater studies on Montague Island – has mentioned that on performing post mortems on dead young shearwaters, they have often found this year that the birds’ stomachs are full of pumice lumps instead of the more usual plastic debris. Pumice is a natural substance , but equally indigestible to baby seabirds. Apparently the adults can eject non-digestible morsels, but juveniles can’t.