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New alien looking jellyfish found in Mariana trench

Surprisingly alien looking jellyfish is discovered on April 4, 2016 from Enigma Seamount near Mariana Trench at almost 3700 meters depth. This jellyfish seems photoshopped, but is real. This was discovered by NOAA’s ship Okeanos Explorer while dispatching their remotely operated vehicle Deep Discoverer to the Enigma Seamount.

Scientists identified it to be of the genus Crossota, a group that does not have a sessile polyp stage. You can see two sets of tentacles in this jellyfish, one short and other long. At the beginning of the video, the long tentacles are extended outward and the bell is not moving. This posture suggests that it is an ambush predator. Inside the bell, red coloured radial canals are connecting to yellow coloured objects, mostly gonads.

Video courtesy of the NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration and Research, 2016 Deepwater Exploration of the Marianas.

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Written by Josin Tharian

Assistant Professor of Zoology by profession.


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