The eyes, the mouth, and a portion of the face and head could be discerned in the “strange mass” that the sea deposited on the sands of Urangan Beach in Hervey Bay, Southern Queensland, Australia, in February 2020. The woman who discovered it posted a photograph of her find on Facebook, but none of the members of the social media group could identify the remains. They agreed only that the discovery was not part of a stone fish, because stone fish have rough skin, but the creature the woman found and photographed had smooth flesh.

Sea Pork 3trivia

Group members took several stabs at identifying the “lump,” venturing such guesses as “soft coral,” “ambergris,” “shark excrement,” and even a whale’s “placenta.” Even Professor Sandie Degnan, of the The University of Queensland’s School of Biological Science wasn’t sure what the mass was, although she suspected it was probably a sea pork, which she described as “a kind of sea squirt, related to the cunjevois,” so-called because of its tendency to “squirt out water.” Fishermen, she added, eviscerate the creatures and use the animals’ “guts as fishing bait.”

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