Environment
Animals

Giant, cryptic ocean dweller filmed roaming the deep sea

This giant phantom jelly's arms grow to over 33 feet long.
By Mark Kaufman  on 
a giant phantom jelly swimming in the deep sea
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File this under "Extremely cool."

Marine scientists at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute recently captured rare footage of a giant phantom jelly (Stygiomedusa gigantea) roaming the deep waters of California's Monterey Bay.

Their video, taken by a sturdy deep sea robot, shows the jelly's massive bell and long, drape-like arms undulating in the water. Over thousands of dives, Monterey Bay researchers have only spotted this enigmatic species nine times, though scientists first documented the phantom jelly in 1899.

"Even now, scientists still know very little about this animal," the research institute wrote.

Often living at depths of some 3,300 to 13,100 feet beneath the surface, these creatures likely feast on small fish and plankton.

The deep sea brims with wonders.


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