UM: New Species of Comb Jelly in South Florida Gets a Name

UM: New Species of Comb Jelly in South Florida Gets a Name

UM: New Species of Comb Jelly in South Florida Gets a Name

MIAMI – Scientists have recently re-discovered and named a new species in the waters off South Florida. The tiny, translucent jellyfish-like animals – called ctenophores or comb jellies – were found living symbiotically with octocorals – sea rods, sea fans – in the waters off South Florida. The University of Miami (UM)-led research team named the new species of creeping ctenophore after the founder of the UM Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, F.G. Walton Smith.

The newly discovered ctenophore was initially studied in the 1960s by Smithsonian Institution scientist and former Rosenstiel School Professor Frederick Bayer (now deceased) on octocorals in Miami’s Biscayne Bay, but only recently did UM Rosenstiel School Professor Peter Glynn re-analyze and classify the comb jelly to give it a name: Coeloplana waltoni.

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