For the first time, scientists with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) have formally identified a new species of undersea creature based solely on high-definition video footage captured at the bottom of the ocean.
And what an undersea creature it is. Meet Duobrachium sparksae – a strange, gelatinous species of ctenophore, encountered by the remotely operated vehicle (ROV) Deep Discoverer during a dive off the coast of Puerto Rico.
That encounter took place back in 2015, but when you’re laying claim to discovering a wholly new species – based solely on video evidence, for that matter, with no physical specimens to help make your case – it helps to do your due diligence.
Luckily, Deep Discoverer‘s cameras – the footage of which you can see here – were up to the job, capable of picking up subtle details on D. sparksae‘s body less than a millimetre long.
Read more: Science Alert