Page 8 - Plankton
The top of the sea sparkles in the sun. The bright sun shines down into the water. Then the light fades away into darkness. Where the sea is light, tiny plants called diatoms, live crowded together. Each diatom is so small that you can see it only with a microscope. Hundreds of diatoms can fit into a drop of seawater. Some diatoms look like glass boxes. Some diatoms look like twinkling stars. Some diatoms look like sparkling jeweled necklaces.
The sea is crowded with tiny, tiny animals, tons and tons of tiny animals. Most are the size of a pinhead, while others are insect sized. Many plankton look like tiny dragons with long swishing feelers, long sharp horns, and feathery tails: copepods, amphipods, and isopods. Many plankton are tiny baby seashore animals: baby snails, sea stars, crabs, barnacles, sea urchins, worms and fish. Swarms of plants and animals make up the thick soup we call plankton. This mixed crowd of tiny plants and tiny animals always drifts near the surface of the sunlit sea.