Philippine Stamps on Marine Biodiversity

\"\"PhilPost issued a new set of definitive stamps on 12th May 2011 dedicated to the marine biodiversity of the Philippine cost. The stamps illustrate a banded vexillum, a mushroom coral, a cowfish and a pink tube sponge.

Banded Vexillum (Vexillum taeniatum) is a species of small sea snail, marine gastropod mollusk with ribbed miters. The shell size varies between 38 mm and 85 mm.

Mushroom Corals (Fungia scutaria) are colonies of individual flattened polyps related to anemones. Color can range widely from green, red, blue, purple or gray. Their surface texture may be smooth or fuzzy looking.

Cowfish (Lactoria cornuta) is recognizable by its long horns that protrude from the front of its head, rather like those of a cow or bull. Adult fish live around sand or rubble bottom up to a depth of 50 m. They are omnivorous, feeding upon benthic algae, various microorganisms, sponges, worms from sand flats, mollusks, small crustaceans, and small fishes.

Pink Tube Sponges (Cribrochalina olemda) are animals of the phylum Porifera. Their bodies consist of jelly-like mesohyl sandwiched between two thin layers of cells. Sponges do not have nervous, digestive or circulatory systems. Instead, most rely on maintaining a constant water flow through their bodies to obtain food and oxygen and to remove wastes, and the shapes of their bodies are adapted to maximize the efficiency of the water flow.

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