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A giant and extremely rare jellyfish has been filmed in the ocean depths

American scientists have filmed the giant and very rare jellyfish Stygiomedusa gigantea in the ocean depths. Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) researchers exploring the ocean depths came across an unusual sight. As they explored inaccessible parts of the ocean using a remotely operated robotic ROV, they spotted and filmed a jellyfish Stygiomedusa gigantea. This
Published: December 7, 2021 - 09:00
Updated: July 22, 2023 - 23:42
A giant and extremely rare jellyfish has been filmed in the ocean depths

American scientists have filmed the giant and very rare jellyfish Stygiomedusa gigantea in the ocean depths.

Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) researchers exploring the ocean depths came across an unusual sight. As they explored inaccessible parts of the ocean using a remotely operated robotic ROV, they spotted and filmed a jellyfish Stygiomedusa gigantea.

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the jellyfish Stygiomedusa gigantea This giant jellyfish represents an extremely rare sight. The specimen documented by the Americans in November 2021 is one of the few encounters to date. Researchers from MBARI They spotted the animal at a depth of 990 metres in Monterey Bay. By their own admission, they were very surprised and very lucky.

The thorax of Stygiomedusa gigantea is over a metre in diameter and has four ribbon-shaped arms growing out of it. The amazing thing is that they can reach a length of over 10 metres! Not only is the jellyfish a real giant, but it also looks extremely spectacular as it makes its way through the ocean depths.

Ribbon-like legs of giant jellyfish Over the years ROV robot, with which researchers from MBARI exploring inaccessible depths, has already made thousands of dives. However, during this time the spectacular jellyfish species has only managed to encounter nine times.

Close-up of jellyfish thorax The findings so far suggest that it is likely to be found worldwide. The presence of Stygiomedusa gigantea researchers have recorded in all ocean basins except the Arctic. Unfortunately, because the jellyfish lives at very great depthsmakes it significantly more difficult to uncover its secrets from the world of science.

Nevertheless, the 4K video of the giant jellyfish allows stunning details to be seen. Now both the appearance and some of the creature’s behaviours have been presented as if on camera.

The first specimen Stygiomedusa gigantea was encountered and recorded by man in 1899. However, it took researchers as long as 60 years to classify it as a separate and previously unknown species. Interestingly, although more than 120 years have passed, we still know very little about this colossus of the deep. To date, scientists have only encountered the animal about 100 times.

Photo: MBARI

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Tomasz Andrukajtis
Editor-in-chief of the DIVERS24 portal and magazine. Responsible for obtaining, translating and developing content. He also supervises all publications. Achived his first diving certification – P1 CMAS, in 2000. Has a degree in journalism and social communication. In the diving industry since 2008.
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