Likened to an "alien mother ship" of invasive species, an enormous Japanese dock—set free more than a year ago by that country's deadly tsunami and earthquake—landed on an Oregon beach last week, as seen in a picture snapped last Thursday.
Encrusted with a hundred tons of Asian crabs, sea stars, algae, urchins, barnacles, snails, and other life-forms, the 66-foot-long (20-meter-long) dock had floated 5,000 miles (8,000 kilometers) across the Pacific from the port of Misawa (map).
(See National Geographic News's complete Japan earthquake and tsunami coverage.)
Pictures: Tsunami Dock Is "Alien Mother Ship" of Species
Teeming with invasive life-forms, the Japanese dock that recently hit the U.S. is a "dirty needle that just got stuck into our ecological arm."