Bloody-Belly Comb Jelly Caught Pooping For The First Time — And It Sparkles!

Here’s a sight that’s probably never been caught on camera before: the bloody-belly comb jelly in the middle of a jelly dump.

The Monterey Bay Aquarium posted the footage on its Twitter feed this week, noting that the jelly’s poops actually sparkle.

“Move over, unicorns,” the organization wrote in a followup tweet:

The bloody-belly comb jelly, which is a ctenophore and not a true jelly, is featured in the aquarium’s new exhibition, Into the Deep.

“Ironically, at the depths where the bloody-belly lives, it’s nearly invisible to predators,” the aquarium noted on its website. “In the darkness of the deep sea, animals that are red appear black and blend into the dark background.”

Since the bloody-belly comb jelly’s prey can be bioluminescent, that blood-red gut hides what it ate, thus hiding the jelly, too.

“A predator with a glowing gut could easily become prey,” the website said.

George Matsumoto, the marine biologist at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) who discovered the bloody-belly comb jelly in 2003, told the Mercury News that he didn’t think it could ever be displayed as it would melt when collected.

“I never had an intact specimen. I never saw it under a microscope,” he said. “It was so sensitive to temperature change, I thought it couldn’t be displayed.”

As a result, he estimated that only two dozen people had observed the bloody-belly comb jelly while it was alive ― until now. And if they’re lucky, they might even see it release sparkly unicorn poops.

The aquarium posted the footage on its YouTube channel, complete with a soundtrack:

<div class="js-react-hydrator" data-component-name="YouTube" data-component-id="3605" data-component-props="{"itemType":"video","index":16,"contentListType":"embed","code":"

","type":"video","meta":{"url":"https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bFTWo2pytww","type":"video","version":"1.0","title":"First-ever video of a bloody-belly comb jelly pooping! | Into the Deep #deepsea #shorts","author":"Monterey Bay Aquarium","author_url":"https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCnM5iMGiKsZg-iOlIO2ZkdQ","provider_name":"YouTube","thumbnail_url":"https://i.ytimg.com/vi/bFTWo2pytww/maxresdefault.jpg","thumbnail_width":1280,"thumbnail_height":720,"cache_age":86400,"options":{"_start":{"label":"Start from","value":"","placeholder":"ex.: 11, 1m10s"},"_end":{"label":"End on","value":"","placeholder":"ex.: 11, 1m10s"},"_cc_load_policy":{"label":"Closed captions","value":false},"click_to_play":{"label":"Hold load & play until clicked","value":false}}},"fullBleed":false,"flags":[],"enhancements":{},"options":{"theme":"news","device":"desktop","editionInfo":{"id":"us","name":"U.S.","link":"https://www.huffpost.com","locale":"en_US"},"slideshowAd":{"scriptTags":[],"otherHtml":""},"slideshowEndCard":{"scriptTags":[{"attribs":{},"scriptBody":"\r\n (function(){\r\n var c = document.getElementById(‘taboola-endslate-thumbnails’);\r\n c.id += ‘-‘ + Math.round(Math.random()*1e16);\r\n \r\n var taboolaParams = {\r\n loader: \"//cdn.taboola.com/libtrc/aol-huffingtonpost/loader.js\",\r\n mode: \"thumbnails-b\",\r\n container: c.id,\r\n placement: \"Endslate Thumbnails\",\r\n target_type: \"mix\"\r\n };\r\n \r\n if (typeof window.modulousQueue === \"function\") {\r\n \twindow.modulousQueue.add(function(){ doTaboola(taboolaParams); });\r\n } else {\r\n \tdoTaboola(taboolaParams);\r\n }\r\n }());\r\n"}],"otherHtml":"

"},"isMapi":false,"isAmp":false,"isVideoEntry":false,"isMt":false,"entryId":"625e59f1e4b066ecde16f302","entryTagsList":"animal-videos,monterey-bay-aquarium,monterey-bay-aquarium-research-institute,bloody-belly-comb-jelly,","sectionSlug":"science","deptSlug":"impact","sectionRedirectUrl":null,"subcategories":"us-news,weird-news,green","isWide":false,"headerOverride":null,"noVideoAds":false,"disableFloat":false,"isNative":false,"commercialVideo":{"provider":"custom","site_and_category":"us.science","package":null},"isHighline":false,"vidibleConfigValues":{"cid":"60afc111dcf87c2cd2f5d8bf","overrides":{"front_page_top_videos":{"desktop":"60b64354b171b7444beaff4d","mobileweb":"60b64354b171b7444beaff4d"},"top_media":{"desktop":"60b8e6bdc5449357a7ada147","mobile":"60b8e701c5449357a7ada2ee","iphone":"60b8e643cdd90620331bb1f6","ipad":"60b8e643cdd90620331bb1f6","androidphone":"60b8e699c5449357a7ada04c","androidtablet":"60b8e699c5449357a7ada04c"},"anthology":{"desktop":"60b8e616cdd90620331bb0ba","mobile":"60b8e671c5449357a7ad9f66","iphone":"60b8e643cdd90620331bb1f6","ipad":"60b8e643cdd90620331bb1f6","androidphone":"60b8e699c5449357a7ada04c","androidtablet":"60b8e699c5449357a7ada04c"},"content":{"desktop":"60b8e616cdd90620331bb0ba","mobile":"60b8e671c5449357a7ad9f66","iphone":"60b8e643cdd90620331bb1f6","ipad":"60b8e643cdd90620331bb1f6","androidphone":"60b8e699c5449357a7ada04c","androidtablet":"60b8e699c5449357a7ada04c"}},"playerUpdates":{"5668ae6ee4b0b5e26955d6a6":"60d2472d9340d7032ad7e443","56aa41bae4b091744c0440d8":"60e869dc7c5f3b17b6741b81","5841b2b5cc52c716ec6e5a7f":"60b8e355cdd90620331ba185","58b5e2b8d85a10302feee895":"60b64316b171b7444beafdb2","58b74698f78ced31417819ae":"60b8e5bec5449357a7ad9b52","58b74ccecebcea57e2c3a3d1":"60b8e5eac5449357a7ad9ca5","58cff690d85a100b9992bc39":"60b8e616cdd90620331bb0ba","58cffb3fb6d9b972a49a3c9d":"60b8e643cdd90620331bb1f6","58cffdd74d96935d7d6ec180":"60b8e671c5449357a7ad9f66","58d03a84f78ced6518eb2fa7":"60b643c82e76be41f112735c","592edf20e0fa177b0c26f7fd":"60b8e699c5449357a7ada04c","5b35266b158f855373e28256":"60b64354b171b7444beaff4d","5c116f29f79c4171d82b7c2a":"60b64440b171b7444beb040b","5c1170fc600c9a697bf0c6b9":"60b646102e76be41f1127ffc","5c47791afa1b317df8ae0c4f":"60b8e6bdc5449357a7ada147","5c477987a6b48b35f164773d":"60b8e701c5449357a7ada2ee","5c4779ee943c3c2a64f28371":"60b8e747cdd90620331bb861","5c477a26fcd67b26879bc7c2":"60b8e788c5449357a7ada67b","5d8921a78c3ae845f366c9b6":"60ae7be5f3a7c13a30417ff9","58b98b00ba82aa39a6534321":"60d0de7c9340d7032ad1146c","58b9d14cb6d9b96c9ec32af3":"60d0dec19340d7032ad115a0","58cff8eccebcea42931e0436":"60d0e005b627221e9d819d44","592edf5de0fa177b0c26f95b":"60d0e38fb627221e9d81adcf","58cff72fd85a100b9992c112":"60d0e447b627221e9d81b0da","56b4d34fe4b022697697c400":"60d2472d9340d7032ad7e443","60b8e4c0c5449357a7ad957d":"60e869dc7c5f3b17b6741b81"}},"connatixConfigValues":{"videoPagePlayer":"f010447b-d244-4111-a314-7b4542ae4145"},"customAmpComponents":[],"ampAssetsUrl":"https://amp.assets.huffpost.com","videoTraits":null,"positionInUnitCounts":{"buzz_head":{"count":0},"buzz_body":{"count":0},"buzz_bottom":{"count":0}},"positionInSubUnitCounts":{"article_body":{"count":3},"before_you_go_slideshow":{"count":0}},"connatixCountsHelper":{"count":1},"buzzfeedTracking":{"context_page_id":"625e59f1e4b066ecde16f302","context_page_type":"buzz","destination":"huffpost","mode":"desktop","page_edition":"en-us"},"tags":[{"name":"animal videos","slug":"animal-videos","links":{"relativeLink":"topic/animals","permalink":"https://www.huffpost.com/topic/animals","mobileWebLink":"https://m.huffpost.com/us/topic/animals"},"topic":{"title":"Animals","slug":"animals","overridesSectionLabel":false},"url":"https://www.huffpost.com/topic/animals"},{"name":"Monterey Bay Aquarium","slug":"monterey-bay-aquarium","links":{"relativeLink":"section/monterey-bay-aquarium","permalink":"https://www.huffpost.com/section/monterey-bay-aquarium","mobileWebLink":"https://m.huffpost.com/us/section/monterey-bay-aquarium"},"url":"https://www.huffpost.com/topic/monterey-bay-aquarium"},{"name":"Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute","slug":"monterey-bay-aquarium-research-institute","links":{"relativeLink":"section/monterey-bay-aquarium-research-institute","permalink":"https://www.huffpost.com/section/monterey-bay-aquarium-research-institute","mobileWebLink":"https://m.huffpost.com/us/section/monterey-bay-aquarium-research-institute"},"url":"https://www.huffpost.com/topic/monterey-bay-aquarium-research-institute"},{"name":"Bloody-belly comb jelly","slug":"bloody-belly-comb-jelly","links":{"relativeLink":"section/bloody-belly-comb-jelly","permalink":"https://www.huffpost.com/section/bloody-belly-comb-jelly","mobileWebLink":"https://m.huffpost.com/us/section/bloody-belly-comb-jelly"},"url":"https://www.huffpost.com/topic/bloody-belly-comb-jelly"}],"cetUnit":"buzz_body"}}”>

[embedded content]

MBARI also shared more info on the bloody-belly comb jelly here:

<div class="js-react-hydrator" data-component-name="YouTube" data-component-id="5946" data-component-props="{"itemType":"video","index":18,"contentListType":"embed","code":"

","type":"video","meta":{"url":"https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6luG9mDaGgw","type":"video","version":"1.0","title":"Weird and Wonderful: The bloody-belly comb jelly, a deep-sea fireball","author":"MBARI (Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute)","author_url":"https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCFXww6CrLAHhyZQCDnJ2g2A","provider_name":"YouTube","description":"This sparkling, deep-sea fireball is the comb jelly Lampocteis cruentiventer. MBARI scientists helped to describe this genus and species using ROV video footage. The name means “brilliant comb jelly with a blood-red belly.”\n\nAll comb jellies, or ctenophores, have eight rows of hair-like cilia, called ctenes, used for swimming and eating. White light from the ROV is diffracted by these beating comb rows producing a rainbow display. Extra-broad, highly iridescent ctene plates make this animal especially bright.\n\nLampocteis can vary from transparent to amber to deep red, but its belly is always blood-red to mask the glow of any bioluminescent prey items it eats. Red wavelengths are absorbed quickly in the ocean, so red coloration helps deep-sea animals camouflage in the depths where they appear black and disappear into the darkness. Comb jellies are a significant component of the midwater food web. \n\nLearn more about this mesmerizing deep-sea jelly: https://www.mbari.org/bloody-belly-comb-jelly-landing-page/\n\nCommon name: Bloody-belly comb jelly\nScientific name: Lampocteis cruentiventer\nReported depth range: 300 meters–1,012 meters (980–3,320 feet)\nSize: to 16 centimeters (6 inches) \n\nEditor: Ted Blanco\nWriter: Kyra Schlining\nProduction team: Kyra Schlining, Susan von Thun, Nancy Jacobsen Stout\n\nPublication:\nHarbison, G. Richard, Matsumoto, George I., Robison, Bruce H., (2001). Lampocteis cruentiventer gen. nov., sp. nov.: A new mesopelagic lobate ctenophore, representing the type of a new family (Class Tentaculata, Order Lobata, Family Lampoctenidae, fam. nov.). Bulletin of Marine Science, 68: 299-311.\n\n\nFollow MBARI on social media:\nFacebook: https://www.facebook.com/MBARInews/\nTwitter: https://twitter.com/MBARI_News\nInstagram: https://www.instagram.com/mbari_news/\nTumblr: https://mbari-blog.tumblr.com\nLinkdIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/monterey-bay-aquarium-research-institute-mbari-/","thumbnail_url":"https://i.ytimg.com/vi/6luG9mDaGgw/maxresdefault.jpg","thumbnail_width":1280,"thumbnail_height":720,"cache_age":86400,"options":{"_start":{"label":"Start from","value":"","placeholder":"ex.: 11, 1m10s"},"_end":{"label":"End on","value":"","placeholder":"ex.: 11, 1m10s"},"_cc_load_policy":{"label":"Closed captions","value":false},"click_to_play":{"label":"Hold load & play until clicked","value":false}}},"fullBleed":false,"flags":[],"enhancements":{},"options":{"theme":"news","device":"desktop","editionInfo":{"id":"us","name":"U.S.","link":"https://www.huffpost.com","locale":"en_US"},"slideshowAd":{"scriptTags":[],"otherHtml":""},"slideshowEndCard":{"scriptTags":[{"attribs":{},"scriptBody":"\r\n (function(){\r\n var c = document.getElementById(‘taboola-endslate-thumbnails’);\r\n c.id += ‘-‘ + Math.round(Math.random()*1e16);\r\n \r\n var taboolaParams = {\r\n loader: \"//cdn.taboola.com/libtrc/aol-huffingtonpost/loader.js\",\r\n mode: \"thumbnails-b\",\r\n container: c.id,\r\n placement: \"Endslate Thumbnails\",\r\n target_type: \"mix\"\r\n };\r\n \r\n if (typeof window.modulousQueue === \"function\") {\r\n \twindow.modulousQueue.add(function(){ doTaboola(taboolaParams); });\r\n } else {\r\n \tdoTaboola(taboolaParams);\r\n }\r\n }());\r\n"}],"otherHtml":"

"},"isMapi":false,"isAmp":false,"isVideoEntry":false,"isMt":false,"entryId":"625e59f1e4b066ecde16f302","entryTagsList":"animal-videos,monterey-bay-aquarium,monterey-bay-aquarium-research-institute,bloody-belly-comb-jelly,","sectionSlug":"science","deptSlug":"impact","sectionRedirectUrl":null,"subcategories":"us-news,weird-news,green","isWide":false,"headerOverride":null,"noVideoAds":false,"disableFloat":false,"isNative":false,"commercialVideo":{"provider":"custom","site_and_category":"us.science","package":null},"isHighline":false,"vidibleConfigValues":{"cid":"60afc111dcf87c2cd2f5d8bf","overrides":{"front_page_top_videos":{"desktop":"60b64354b171b7444beaff4d","mobileweb":"60b64354b171b7444beaff4d"},"top_media":{"desktop":"60b8e6bdc5449357a7ada147","mobile":"60b8e701c5449357a7ada2ee","iphone":"60b8e643cdd90620331bb1f6","ipad":"60b8e643cdd90620331bb1f6","androidphone":"60b8e699c5449357a7ada04c","androidtablet":"60b8e699c5449357a7ada04c"},"anthology":{"desktop":"60b8e616cdd90620331bb0ba","mobile":"60b8e671c5449357a7ad9f66","iphone":"60b8e643cdd90620331bb1f6","ipad":"60b8e643cdd90620331bb1f6","androidphone":"60b8e699c5449357a7ada04c","androidtablet":"60b8e699c5449357a7ada04c"},"content":{"desktop":"60b8e616cdd90620331bb0ba","mobile":"60b8e671c5449357a7ad9f66","iphone":"60b8e643cdd90620331bb1f6","ipad":"60b8e643cdd90620331bb1f6","androidphone":"60b8e699c5449357a7ada04c","androidtablet":"60b8e699c5449357a7ada04c"}},"playerUpdates":{"5668ae6ee4b0b5e26955d6a6":"60d2472d9340d7032ad7e443","56aa41bae4b091744c0440d8":"60e869dc7c5f3b17b6741b81","5841b2b5cc52c716ec6e5a7f":"60b8e355cdd90620331ba185","58b5e2b8d85a10302feee895":"60b64316b171b7444beafdb2","58b74698f78ced31417819ae":"60b8e5bec5449357a7ad9b52","58b74ccecebcea57e2c3a3d1":"60b8e5eac5449357a7ad9ca5","58cff690d85a100b9992bc39":"60b8e616cdd90620331bb0ba","58cffb3fb6d9b972a49a3c9d":"60b8e643cdd90620331bb1f6","58cffdd74d96935d7d6ec180":"60b8e671c5449357a7ad9f66","58d03a84f78ced6518eb2fa7":"60b643c82e76be41f112735c","592edf20e0fa177b0c26f7fd":"60b8e699c5449357a7ada04c","5b35266b158f855373e28256":"60b64354b171b7444beaff4d","5c116f29f79c4171d82b7c2a":"60b64440b171b7444beb040b","5c1170fc600c9a697bf0c6b9":"60b646102e76be41f1127ffc","5c47791afa1b317df8ae0c4f":"60b8e6bdc5449357a7ada147","5c477987a6b48b35f164773d":"60b8e701c5449357a7ada2ee","5c4779ee943c3c2a64f28371":"60b8e747cdd90620331bb861","5c477a26fcd67b26879bc7c2":"60b8e788c5449357a7ada67b","5d8921a78c3ae845f366c9b6":"60ae7be5f3a7c13a30417ff9","58b98b00ba82aa39a6534321":"60d0de7c9340d7032ad1146c","58b9d14cb6d9b96c9ec32af3":"60d0dec19340d7032ad115a0","58cff8eccebcea42931e0436":"60d0e005b627221e9d819d44","592edf5de0fa177b0c26f95b":"60d0e38fb627221e9d81adcf","58cff72fd85a100b9992c112":"60d0e447b627221e9d81b0da","56b4d34fe4b022697697c400":"60d2472d9340d7032ad7e443","60b8e4c0c5449357a7ad957d":"60e869dc7c5f3b17b6741b81"}},"connatixConfigValues":{"videoPagePlayer":"f010447b-d244-4111-a314-7b4542ae4145"},"customAmpComponents":[],"ampAssetsUrl":"https://amp.assets.huffpost.com","videoTraits":null,"positionInUnitCounts":{"buzz_head":{"count":0},"buzz_body":{"count":0},"buzz_bottom":{"count":0}},"positionInSubUnitCounts":{"article_body":{"count":3},"before_you_go_slideshow":{"count":0}},"connatixCountsHelper":{"count":1},"buzzfeedTracking":{"context_page_id":"625e59f1e4b066ecde16f302","context_page_type":"buzz","destination":"huffpost","mode":"desktop","page_edition":"en-us"},"tags":[{"name":"animal videos","slug":"animal-videos","links":{"relativeLink":"topic/animals","permalink":"https://www.huffpost.com/topic/animals","mobileWebLink":"https://m.huffpost.com/us/topic/animals"},"topic":{"title":"Animals","slug":"animals","overridesSectionLabel":false},"url":"https://www.huffpost.com/topic/animals"},{"name":"Monterey Bay Aquarium","slug":"monterey-bay-aquarium","links":{"relativeLink":"section/monterey-bay-aquarium","permalink":"https://www.huffpost.com/section/monterey-bay-aquarium","mobileWebLink":"https://m.huffpost.com/us/section/monterey-bay-aquarium"},"url":"https://www.huffpost.com/topic/monterey-bay-aquarium"},{"name":"Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute","slug":"monterey-bay-aquarium-research-institute","links":{"relativeLink":"section/monterey-bay-aquarium-research-institute","permalink":"https://www.huffpost.com/section/monterey-bay-aquarium-research-institute","mobileWebLink":"https://m.huffpost.com/us/section/monterey-bay-aquarium-research-institute"},"url":"https://www.huffpost.com/topic/monterey-bay-aquarium-research-institute"},{"name":"Bloody-belly comb jelly","slug":"bloody-belly-comb-jelly","links":{"relativeLink":"section/bloody-belly-comb-jelly","permalink":"https://www.huffpost.com/section/bloody-belly-comb-jelly","mobileWebLink":"https://m.huffpost.com/us/section/bloody-belly-comb-jelly"},"url":"https://www.huffpost.com/topic/bloody-belly-comb-jelly"}],"cetUnit":"buzz_body"}}”>

[embedded content]

Comments are closed.