The creature found by the researchers has tentacles, as well as a long thin body in the form of a stem reaching the ocean floor.
The other day, scientists from the Nautilus research vessel stumbled upon an unusual sea creature Solumbellula, write Cnet.
The intriguing creature belongs to the order of colonial coral polyps – sea feathers, and has tentacles, as well as a long thin body in the form of a stem that reaches the ocean floor.
“We did not expect this. This is a truly exciting discovery,” said the Nautilus team.
Experts stumbled upon the sea pen using a remotely operated vehicle (or ROV) in an uncharted seamount near Johnston Atoll, a group of islands west of Hawaii in the Pacific Ocean. The researchers were very surprised by the find.
For the first time this animal was seen in the Pacific Ocean. However, it is usually found in the Atlantic and Indian Oceans. Nautilus came across two specimens while diving.
The video, filmed at a depth of 2,994 m, shows the moment of discovery, as well as comments from excited researchers. As noted by one of the experts, the creature looked disgusting when the ROV took a close-up of its tentacles grabbing food. It is also worth adding that the body of the sea pen (stalk) has a length of 2 m.
The sea pen belongs to the cnidarians, a large group of aquatic animals, which includes corals and jellyfish.
“Further viewing the footage and this sample will help experts determine whether this creature is the first Pacific S.monocephalus or a potential new species,” the experts emphasized.
The research expedition to Johnston Atoll took place from June 20 to July 13 and was aimed at studying the biodiversity of the area. From a rare jellyfish to a delightful unidentified jelly-like creature, Nautilus has lifted the veil on many wonders of the deep.
“This find reminds us of how important Pacific exploration efforts are if we truly want to understand our planet's diversity.” experts concluded.