Story: Marine animals without backbones

Comb jelly

Comb jelly

Comb jellies such as this Pleurobrachia pileus are common in coastal plankton. They are exclusively carnivorous and prey on smaller animal plankton. Clearly visible here are the eight comb-like rows of cilia (hair-like structures) that propel the animal through the water. Most comb jellies are bioluminescent and will produce bright flashes of light if disturbed.

Using this item
Photograph by Peter Batson

This item has been provided for private study purposes (such as school projects, family and local history research) and any published reproduction (print or electronic) may infringe copyright law. It is the responsibility of the user of any material to obtain clearance from the copyright holder.

All images & media in this story

How to cite this page:

Dennis Gordon and Maggy Wassilieff, 'Marine animals without backbones - Sponges and jellies', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 25 June 2024)

Story by Dennis Gordon and Maggy Wassilieff, published 12 Jun 2006