For years, people have had it wrong. Possibly even millennia, if you believe the claims about paintings of ancient aliens inside an Indian cave. Rather than looking up toward the stars, the latest discovery by scientists working for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) should have people looking into the deep ocean for UFOs.
The Mariana Trench is the deepest part of the ocean. Located in the western Pacific, Challenger Deep, the Trench’s lowest point, is over 36,000 feet (almost 9 miles) below the surface. A number of weird creatures have been discovered near the Trench before. For that reason, and some scientific interest, of course, NOAA has been sending the remotely operated vehicle (ROV) Deep Discoverer on a series of dives. A few weeks ago, scientists monitoring the video feed from the ROV were stunned by what they saw. There, floating in the water, was a brand new species of jellyfish that looked like it was plucked from a science fiction movie.
The animal belongs to the genus Crossota and is an ambush predator. The long tentacles act like a spider’s web. As the jelly floats motionless in the water, prey stumbles into the tentacles, allowing the jelly to entrap the creature and consume it. Perhaps even more magnificent than the creature’s tentacles are the stunning colors in its bell. With incandescent yellows and neon reds radiating from the inside of the translucent jelly, it appears to light up the darkness of the ocean depths. According to scientists, the bright yellow colors indicate the location of the jelly’s gonads, while the red areas are the canals connecting the gonads.
The newly discovered jellyfish was found at a depth of nearly 12,000 feet (2.3 miles) below the ocean’s surface, between The Philippines and Japan. While scientists were quick to catalog the amazingly weird creature, they were still shocked by its appearance. As a result, they nicknamed the marine animal ‘Microsoft Paint,’ as it looks like something drawn with the illustrator program.