Thursday, March 2, 2017

Itty Bitty Jelly

from: Archie Mc Phee's Endless Geyser of Awesome

Behold the extra awesomeness of a beautiful deep-sea jellyfish that looks like a flying saucer. This underwater UFO (USO?) was recently spotted by the NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer during a research dive at the Utu Seamount in the National Marine Sanctuary of American Samoa in the South Pacific.

Published on Feb 26, 2017
A jellyfish was filmed near a previously unexplored seamount by NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer on 21 February 2017. The jellyfish’s reproductive organs are bright yellow while the digestive system appears red. Tentatively called “Utu”, the seamount is located in the northern region of the American Samoa Exclusive Economic Zone.
Video courtesy of the NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration and Research, 2017 American Samoa 1:09 min.

According to NOAA zoologist Allen Collins, this jelly is a Rhopalonematid trachymedusa. These animals are primarily found in the deep ocean, and are identifiable by their umbrella-like appearance.
As noted by the biologists in the video, the translucent creature’s reproductive organs can be seen in bright yellow, and its digestive system appears in red. It’s not immediately obvious why this jelly features two types of tentacles—one set that faces up and another that faces down. It’s possible this configuration helps it to snatch its prey.
[via Gizmodo]

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