Sea Cucumbers Spawning

A Fleeting Moment...

Several years ago, I managed to record a spawning sea cucumber on a night dive. The excitement was astounding as I went to download the footage of this incredibly rare thing I had never seen.  After rinsing gear, making the long trek hauling gear to my room and finally getting sat down late at night, I couldn't wait any longer.

But, instead,  my worst nightmare for video footage had occurred: SD CARD ERROR.

"I'll never see that again", I thought. But I was wrong. 

Night Dive With the Sea Cucumber


We began our dive at sunset, a beautiful twilight night dive just after a full moon.  The reef was starting to pick up with excitement on our quest to find the octopus.  It was only on the return back to the entry point where I was finally able to see the same sea cucumber I had seen less than an hour ago, looking like as lifeless as always.

Sea Cucumbers Gone Wild!


The male sea cucumber spawns first - standing on end, and spewing male gametes into the water.  This effort sparks any nearby female sea cucumber to release her gametes into the water about 30 minutes later.  The current of the water flows and sexual reproduction of the species can occur.  Also, sea cucumbers reproduce asexually as well, but it doesn't make for a very good film.

Sea Cucumbers are Edible?

Once doing research for this video, I found out the Sea Cucumbers are not only eaten, they are eaten so often that they have become a farmed animal.  Sea Cucumbers are apparently so delicious that they have been exploited in the wild, so seeing natural reproductive activity from them is actually quite rare.  

Enjoy this video of Sea Cucumbers Gone Wild.