Photo copyrighted by Aquarium of the Pacific
Hello Explorers! It's time for the Creature of the Week! Did everyone enjoy the lightshows on July 4th? Well, there are plenty of lightshows in the ocean that you can see year-round! One creature that has a way with light is the Sea Wal...nut, also known as the Warty Comb Jelly. Now, comb jellies, or Ctenophores, are not true jellies, and in fact their relationship to other phyla has been highly debated. Comb jellies are known as such because members of the group use rows of cilia (hair-like extensions) that extend down their bodies in eight lines for locomotion. The Warty Comb Jelly is one of the many species of ctenophores that create lightshows in one of two ways: they can bioluminesce blue-green down their cilia when disturbed, and during the day their cilia rows refract light into rainbow like patterns. Warty Comb Jellies are native to the North and South American Atlantic coasts. Unfortunately, these voracious predators have invaded European coasts, and have become a problem on the fish and invertebrate populations. See, the comb jelly feeds on fish and invertebrate larvae, with an individdual being capable of eating up to 10 times its weight per day.
To read more on the Warty Comb Jelly, follow the link below:
And to see a real light show, watch below!