Scientists at the Schalkid Ocean Institute’s Falkor research vessel are on an expedition to explore the Ningalu Canyons offshore Australia.
During the expedition, they discovered something amazing – a very long siphonophore – and shared a video showing an unusual animal.
Siphonophorae is an order of Hydrozoans, a class of marine organisms belonging to thephylum Cnidaria.
Although a siphonophore may appear to be an individual organism, each specimen is in fact a colonial organism composed of medusoid and polypoid zooids that are morphologically and functionally specialized. Most colonies are long, thin, transparent floaters living in the pelagic zone.
As Schmidt Ocean Institute experts point out, the siphonophore in the video is arguably the largest ever captured; according to the institute, the diameter of its outer ring is about 15 meters, so that only one given ring appears to be about 47 meters in length.
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