There’s something about self-isolation that longs for the wandering ways of the jellies. So I’ve probably spent a bit too much time oogling videos lately. Luckily, there’s been plenty to virtually drift off to.
The Schmidt Ocean Institute captured video of what will likely be named the longest creature in the world. A siphonophore called Apolema, it was spotted coiled in the deep sea off of Ningaloo Reef in western Australia, perhaps resting on a thermal gradient, a cool water mattress, if you will. If that alone doesn’t blow your mind, then get a load of this: it’s outer coil alone was estimated at over 150 feet. Rebecca Helm, jellybiologist extraordinairre, has started a #dailyjelly fix over on Twitter, and put up an amazing thread on siphonophore biology.
Sometimes it really hits home that the deep sea is more poorly explored than the Moon. And every time we look we find more amazing creatures we share this planet with. Here’s a stunning summary video from the entire Ningaloo Canyons expedition if you need more deep sea dreaming.
And then there’s this amazing report from the Philippines where a bloom of Crambione mastigophora, identified as tomato jellyfish, turned an entire bay mauve polka-dotted. Ph.D. student Sheldon Rey Boco noted that they were clearly not observing social distancing.
Jellyfish certainly are not affected by #COVID19 restrictions. Here is a bloom of #jellyfish medusae of the tomato 🍅 jelly, Crambione cf. mastigophora in El Nido, S. Philippines 🇵🇭
🎥 Alimar Amor 23 March 2020 pic.twitter.com/5avr1ptJdy
— Sheldon Rey Boco (@SheldonRey) March 28, 2020
Lastly, a moment of zen. A single barrel jellyfish, taking a leisurely stroll through the stately canals of Venice. (Rumors that the dolphin in the canals were somehow special, needed a bit of fact-checking.)
Stay safe and viva la medusa!