Suppose you’re walking along the beach and you see a jellyfish washed up on the sand. Then you see another and then another. It’s a jellyfish invasion! What do you do? Who do you call? If MBARI researcher Steve Haddock has his way, you’ll take some photos and maybe a few notes, and send them in to his new Jellywatch website (www.jellywatch.org), to share your discovery with the world.
These days, when you can find your way through the woods using a cell phone or explore Mount Everest on your home computer, it’s hard to imagine that as many as 100,000 mountains on Earth have never been seen by human eyes, let alone explored. For all intents and purposes, these mountains are invisible, because they lie thousands of meters beneath the ocean waves.
Creeping slowly across the deep seafloor on long, spindly legs, giant sea spiders are found in many deep-sea areas. But, as with many deep-sea animals, we know very little about how sea spiders live. A recent paper by MBARI-affiliated researchers shows that sea spiders suck the juices out of deep-sea anemones.