November 16, 2018
- as seen by -Julie Larsen Maher
West Coast sea nettles (Chrysaora fuscescens) look like underwater umbrellas richly adorned with lengths of lace and ribbon. Elegant in appearance, these carnivorous invertebrates are better appreciated from a distance. Their bowl-shaped bells are covered with stinging cells and trimmed with 24 tentacles and four frilly oral arms that flow around them to help catch prey.
Beautiful and fluid, these true jellies (distinguished by their bells) display a kaleidoscope of colors as they pulse through the waters off the west coast of the United States. Or look them up at your local aquarium. Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium in Nebraska features West Coast sea nettles (above) and other underwater life in the largest aquarium at a zoo.