Published: April 2007
Did You Know?
In Did you Know? the National Geographic magazine team shares extra information we gathered to expand your knowledge of our featured subjects.

The underwater site known as Strawberry Fields in Fiordland gets its name from the strawberry sea cucumber, Squamocnus brevidentis. These animals form a mat on a rock wall in Preservation Inlet at densities of up to a thousand individuals per square meter. They contract from their regular cucumber shape into a strawberry blob when disturbed. Like sea pens, they are usually found in far deeper waters, but the dark, tannin-stained waters of Fiordland serve as excellent habitat. S. brevidentis gives birth to live young, which is not common for most sea cucumbers.

—Karen Courtnage