Sea Creatures of Splendid Design: Jellyfish

Jellyfish… What mysterious, gorgeous animals. They dazzle our eyes with their wonderful, vivid colors, each with totally different looks. Such unique animals that every time we see one, it’s as if we get hypnotized. But what makes them so special? More importantly, what makes such mesmerizing creatures so dangerous? In this article, I’ll talk about different kinds of jellyfish, enjoy!

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1. The most dangerous types of Jellyfish

1.1. Chironex Fleckeri

Chironex Fleckeri, commonly known as sea wasp is the most dangerous type of jellyfish to exist. Also known as box jellyfish, they are common on the coasts of northern Australia, New Guinea, Indonesia, and Malaysia and can kill people in just a few minutes. 

They have tentacles up to 3 meters, which release a very morbid venom by the touch of the millions of cnidocytes covering them. Chironex Fleckeri are the largest of cubozoans with a bell of about 16 centimeters in diameter, which has 15 tentacles from each corner.

Avispa marina.jpg: Guido Gautsch, Toyota, Japan derivative work: MithrilCC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

1.2. Pelagia noctiluca

Pelagia noctiluca are a part of the Pelagiidae family which are eukaryotic jellyfish. They have meters of long tentacles covered in venomous capsules which have nematocyst cells. Also, they have bells that are 10 centimeters wide. They are colored in pink, reddish colors and travel as a group.

© Hans Hillewaert

2. The biggest types of Jellyfish

2.1. Cyanea Capillata

Cyanea Capillata are the biggest type of jellyfish as well as being one of the most dangerous jellyfish types. The type is also known as the lion’s mane jellyfish, because of the bright orange color it has. The width of the jellyfish can be up to 2 metres and their tentacles can be as long as 37 metres. The word “Capillata” means furry in Latin. 

They can be found around the coasts of Australia and New Zealand, as well as the United States of America. The biggest Cyanea Capillata was found in 1870, on the Gulf of Massachusetts.

BjoertvedtCC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

2.2. Cephea Cephea

Cephea cephea, also called the cauliflower jellyfish because of their cauliflower-like look, are very dangerous and venomous. They can have a width of up to 1 meter, with a lot of red and blueish tentacles. Even though thought to be mysterious because of the disappearance they made, it is now known that they hide deep down in the ocean. They live in a polyp form and are also known as crown jellyfish.

Derek KeatsCC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

2.3. Rhizostoma Pulmo

Rhizostoma Pulmo, also known as the barrel jellyfish, the dustbin-lid jellyfish, and the frilly-mouthed jellyfish is actually not as poisonous and harmful as other jellyfish are. They have spongey tissue along with a lung-like look. While being seen in the Irish Sea, they have a diameter of up to 40 centimeters. Though they might grow up to 1 meter and weigh up to 25 kilograms, they are not the biggest type of jellyfish, but quite big.

Ales Kladnik from Ljubljana, SloveniaCC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons


THE JELLYFISH GARDEN- Paola Vitale & Rossana Bossù

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