30 comments on “The Five Foot Jellyfish

  1. I would guess that your ‘thing’ is a rendering (either eggs or fecal mater) of a large, sessile invertebrate, an anemone perhaps.

    When I kept an anemone in an aquarium, it would occasionally disgorge a similar (but – thankfully – much smaller) gelatinous blob after a feeding; the consistency of egg white.

    Great blog!

    • Hmm. Thanks for the observation Chris- a new angle on what is still an elusive little mystery. Thanks for dropping by and leaving your thoughts. And yeah, I imagine finding that in the fish-tank one morning would be a bit of a sorry surprise!

  2. Well it was certainly curious. The first time it happened, I left it in there for a few days in the hopes that it might be eggs, but it didn’t change at all; just kept drifting around in there, so I finally fished it out and flushed it. The upside was that they were nice tidy packages (well, sort of) and easily disposed of. Very helpful in a small enclosed environment such as an aquarium, which tends to have a rather critical equilibrium.

    Some anemones don’t eat often, but they can eat a *lot*.

    PS I stopped keeping aquariums shortly after I became a denizen of the world’s largest aquarium myself. 🙂

  3. Hi,
    While in Jervis Bay, New South Wales this week the same creature was floating around close to the waters edge. Very curious as to what it is. Ours was about 18 inches long and about 6 inches in diameter.

  4. Hi, I saw one at Murray’s Beach, Jervis bay just floating off the sand on 15th, maybe same as Ruth saw.
    A friend thought it was a net bag like those used in supermarkets to hold oranges. So she went to pick it out of the water.
    Her hand went through it but she did not break it in half. No sting thank heavens, – bright coloured things usually sting -.
    Still looking to find out what it is.

  5. Hi, I saw the same thing in Maui about a week ago near Wailea Beach. It was the strangest thing I have ever seen. I have been trying to find out what it is but have been unsucessful! If you ever find out what it is please let me know.

  6. i saw the same thing here in olango island, philippines during our scuba diving… we were so amaze that we want to catch it… we really try to figure it out.. what is it?… it might be a very dangerous jellyfish… when my friend tried to catch it using a stick…it was cut into half…but then we just leave it alone…
    if you know what kind of thing is it. please let us know.. thank you

  7. I saw the same thing (But in white) just off the beaches of Cayo Coco (Cuba) a few days ago… I’m really curious to know what this is!

  8. I saw three in Cuba around Dec. 17th or 18th off Villas Cameleon de Jibacoa / Breezes (halfway between Havana and Varadero peninsula). The first one was floating in a bunch of trash (including a destroyed suitcase) and I was almost sure it was a pair of odd beaded pantyhose – until I pushed it around a little with a stick (it looked to be about the right size but it was too perfect). It seemed to hold together well enough, I didn’t try to destroy it. I moved beyond it and saw another one (identical) floating a few metres away and decided to go back to shore where I swam backwards directly through one in 3 feet of water. At that point I wasn’t sure it wouldn’t sting so I got straight out without investigating.

    It seemed quite a bit like a clutch of tiny frog eggs – probably expelled in a string that wound around and around attaching to itself as it went. I would have guessed they were from jellyfish, but but an anemone makes a lot of sense. I can picture these eggs rising slowly in a ring from the inside of an anemone and being gently pulled away by tidal action. This is the only page with photos of them that I have found so far.

  9. I saw one yesterday morning stranded @the shore of Bantayan Island, Cebu. It was huge! The string of tiny spots in its body were brown…probably because it’s in the open. I’m not sure if its just because of the wind but it looks like the thing is pulsating in the sand. I just took photos and a video of it…still don’t know what it is.

  10. It could be a pyrosome, a colonial and pelagic tunicate. They can be a number of colors as they are they most bioluminescent organism on Earth. If one end of the tube was open and the other closed, then it’s likely a pyrosome.

  11. We just saw one at Secret Bay in Dominica, WI. It wrapped around me, and I screamed. I thought it was a purple net, but upon further investigation it was this thing. We are glad you have a picture of proof. Still don’t know the name thought, would love to find out

  12. My friends saw the same thing last weekend in the shallow water area of Tofu Cape in Yi-Lan County, TAIWAN. We all feel astonished about what he saw and are very eager to know the answer of what the animal really called (if it is an animal). It will be highly appreciated if you find the answer and announce it in your blog.

    Share with you guys some photos of this strange thing (creature?)in the link below:

    • Thanks Vincent- you’re a legend! Spot on- you’re right 🙂 I’ve put up a fresh post on the homepage reflecting your discovery. Stoked to have it figured out after all this time! Cheers buddy!

  13. Thanks for the information.I took two pictures of a five to six foot long purple tube in Curasao in January 2012. I will post them however I do not know how to here.

  14. Pingback: The Five-Foot Jellyfish, Revisited « WanderLust

  15. Same here in San Pedro Ambergris, Belize on 7th April 2013 i saw this jelly type stuff near the beach and was curious to find out what it was. Thanks for all the info

  16. I came across one same as the pic in Batangas, Luzon, Philippines on May 1st, 2014. Just under 6 feet long, and where the thing ended, the “tail” tapered down to about 1/2 inch diameter, and it seemed to have a partially digested minnow inside the ‘tail’. I was so amazed that I drifted with this creature for over 20 minutes, getting all angles of view and comparing it to my own size. At the ‘head’ end, I was not able to distinguish the end of the animal, as the ‘jelly’ it was formed of seemed to go on and continue with me not being able to see a definitive ending. I was diving a reef edge, water over 50 feet deep and this was drifting along the shallow of the reef. Truly added much to my dive experience, along with seeing my 1st frog fish.

  17. spotted one at Camiguin Island mindanao Phillipines October 2014 touched it & it seemed to grow longer.thanks for letting us know what it is.truely amazing.

  18. Hi,
    To me it looks like a type of salp.
    Its an organism that is made out of snaller organisms, individuals, to form a large colony like the one you saw. You’d be interested to look it up.

  19. I also saw a couple on the beach cebu (actually talisay ) Philippines. It was about 6 feet long, another about 8 feet.

  20. I have seen a segment exactly the same..in moal boal philliphines…..about 3inches dia with purple dots spiralling ..tubelike with no head

  21. I was diving in Anilao, Philippines yesterday and one of these floated past. It was not ringed, but pink, and a little more opaque. About 1.5 metres in length. We swam with it for awhile giving it a bit if a poke and prod then let it alone. I’ve been curious ever since!

  22. My original glance at this made me think of nudibranch (sea cucumber) Egg threads. They tend to lay long ribbons of eggs that vary in color and length. Some are opaque ribbons of lucious reds, blues, yellows, whites, greys, etc. Some will lay transparent, with small sphere like egg sacks. The female (you heard it right) then comes along and inseminates them.

    Unfortunately, Nuibranchi don’t reach sizes to accumulate that grand of an egg structure.

    So you need to delve a little deeper – Jelly fish tentacles have a type of protein inside of them that organically breaks down very quickly when detached. that’s why you see most on the beach fronts with no tentacles left, and all that is left is primarily the mouth/anus, membrane and epidermis. If you DID happen to stumble upon that large of a tentacle you would be in great pain from the sting as soon as you touched it weather it was connected or not. The actual Dermis, mesoglea does not sting you, it’s the tentacle itself, with the use of electrolysis. A lot of these tentacles are also devoured by living organism, and micro plankton as a protein source, and they appear white in color or a maroon to pink or reddish tint from the protein itself when ejected from the dermis.

    So ruling those two out, the next thing I could think of would be (and most likely the winner) A squid Eggsack.

    Squid love to use tubular floating eggsacks as their reproduction means because the sperm can float inside and inseminate the tube itself, it also makes it very light weight and floats for various distances till it can rest inside of Kelp, Duckweed, etc. The main reason they are designed by nature to float into something to be caught in (seeing as i notice most responses were shallow water, and you were diving in a relatively shallow water) is because they need shelter from larger predators. These larger predators, when in that small egg, can be just as small as one to two inches.

    A tube that size, is more than likely a large squid, to a giant squid. Colossal squid lay ones that you can swim through, much like the size of a dogshow tube.

    Hope this helps. Keep finding some interesting things.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s