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Before humans, before dinosaurs and before flowering plants were these creatures . . . horseshoe crabs. This creature has 10 eyes and can see UV light. Since I first saw them as a kid at Wolly Beach, I haven't cared for their severe appearance. I can however appreciate its vital, if little-known, role in the life of anyone who has received an injectable medication. An extract of the horseshoe crab's blood is used by the pharmaceutical and medical device industries to ensure that their products, e.g., intravenous drugs, vaccines, and medical devices, are free of bacterial contamination. No other test works as easily or reliably for this purpose. You can find out more about these ancient creatures here.
This is also my entry for Monochrome Monday. Click here to see more black and white images from around the world.