Source: Live Science
Scientists aboard research ship E/V Nautilus have posted another fascinating video of one of the denizens of the deep that it routinely films during its exploratory missions in the remote central Pacific.
“What are you?” enquires one of the researchers, as the small, bulbous creature comes into view. “Is that a squid? I think it’s a squid. It’s like a bloated squid with tiny tentacles and a little hat that’s waving around. And it looks like it’s got a massive, inflated mantle cavity. I’ve never seen anything quite like this before.”
The creature they found, which was spotted using a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) at a depth of 4,544 feet (1,385 meters) near Palmyra Atoll, is known as a piglet squid (Helicocranchia sp.) because of its large siphon that looks like a snout. Squids use the siphon to move around by pushing and pulling the surrounding water like a jet pump. They are able to regulate buoyancy with an ammonia-filled internal chamber. This cute cephalopod is typically observed with its tentacles flared above its head like reindeer antlers. (In terms of cuteness factor, it doesn’t quite compete with the awesome “googly-eyed squid” spotted by the team a few years ago.)
Funded by the nonprofit Ocean Exploration Trust, the Nautilus—along with its ROVs—is currently studying deep-water features in the vicinity of Kingman Reef, Palmyra Atoll, and Jarvis Island, part of the Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument. Check out more amazing critter finds at www.nautiluslive.org.
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