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10 Different Types of Jellyfish

Updated on March 1, 2011
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Australian Box JellyfishFlower Hat JellyfishBathykorus bouilloniMoon JelliesNomura's Jellyfish
Australian Box Jellyfish
Australian Box Jellyfish
Flower Hat Jellyfish
Flower Hat Jellyfish
Bathykorus bouilloni
Bathykorus bouilloni
Moon Jellies
Moon Jellies
Nomura's Jellyfish
Nomura's Jellyfish

You certainly know what a jellyfish is. But did you know that there are different types of jellyfish? In fact, there are more than 2000 different species of jellyfish according to Smithsonian Magazine. Here are ten different ones that just might fascinate you if you look closely!

1.     Aequorea Victoria. This jellyfish is also known as the crystal jellyfish. That makes it sounds like it’s got a great glittery look and it certainly does have a neat translucent appearance. However, it’s also cool because of how it has helped science. It has a protein in it called GFP that has been used in a number of scientific experiments including the creation of a rabbit that glows underneath blacklights! GFP has also been used to help study cell processes to help solve serious health problems like Alzheimer’s. In terms of the jellyfish itself, this protein makes it look a really cool fluorescent blue green color.

2.     Australian Box Jellyfish. You may have heard somewhere that jellyfish are dangerous. That’s true but none are as dangerous as the Australian Box Jellyfish. Also called a Sea Wasp, this jellyfish is frightening in appearance when you finally see it but it’s tough to see since it’s almost completely transparent. When you do see them, you might think that you’re looking at a mutant of some kind since they have multiple eyeballs on their stomachs. Creepy! They tend to be cube-shaped instead of dome-shaped so if you see something like that in the water then you might want to get away!

3.     Bathykorus Bouilloni. This is one super cool jellyfish that was discovered just within the past ten years. It’s a deep sea jellyfish that thrives in the Arctic. It made headlines not only because it emerged as yet another new species of jellyfish but also because it looks a lot like Darth Vader! Scientifically speaking, “the species has four primary tentacles, four secondary tentacles, with three interradial manubrial pouches in each quadrant.” (source)

4.     Costa Rican Jellyfish. These just might be the strangest jellyfish that you’ve never seen. They live in a part of the waters of Costa Rica that are ridiculously hot (more than six hundred degrees in temperature) at a depth of more than 8000 feet below the water’s surface. Unlike other jellyfish, these jellyfish are a dark pink color. Their official name is Stauromedusae, which makes you think of serpent-haired Medusa, an apt description of the creepiness of these creatures!

5.     Flower Hat Jelly. This jellyfish is named because of the way that it looks like it has a neon pink flower hat atop its head (although it’s official name is Olindias Formosa). It’s a stunner. In addition to pink it has purple and orange hues that are eye-catching. It is found in the waters of Brazil and Argentina although it has also been spotted in Japanese waters. It is a fairly small jellyfish at just about six inches across but it’s definitely one worth looking for if you ever get an opportunity!

6.     Foot Long Tentacles Jellyfish. Smithsonian Magazine reports that there is believed to be a twelve-inch long jellyfish that lives in the frozen waters underneath the ice of the West Antarctic! The fact that this jellyfish can exist in the same world as the Costa Rican Jellyfish that thrives in 600 degree waters really emphasizes how many different types of jellyfish there must be in the world! Learn more.

7.     Moon Jellyfish. These are some of the most common jellyfish that people are actually familiar with. If you have ever seen jellyfish in an aquarium, pulsating in a magical type of manner then it was probably a moon jellyfish that you were looking at. Wikipedia describes its appearance: “The medusa is translucent, usually about 25–40 cm in diameter, and can be recognized by its four horseshoe-shaped gonads that are easily seen through the top of the bell.” They may be what we now consider “traditional” in appearance but they are enjoyed specifically for their aesthetic beauty. This jellyfish is officially named the Aurelia Aurita and also goes by the names Saucer Jelly and Common Jelly.

8.     Normura’s Jellyfish. Can you imagine swimming up to a Jellyfish that was even bigger than you are? They do exist even though they sound like something out of a horror movie. They’re called Normuras and they can be as big as 100 feet in length and more than six feet in diameter. If you were able to pick one of these jellyfish up you’d be holding something as heavy as 450 pounds! They exist primarily off of the coast of Japan.

9.     Phialella Zappai. What might interest you most about this jellyfish is its name. If you can’t tell from just looking at the name, it is named after musician Frank Zappa. That’s because the scientist who discovered this type of jellyfish among the many different jellyfish out there in the world was a Zappa fan. He reportedly wrote to Zappa to let him know he was naming a jellyfish after him and ended up meeting him in person as a result.

10. Rhopilema Esculentum. That’s a mouthful to say, isn’t it? It’s also a mouthful of jellyfish because this type of jellyfish is known for being edible. They are cultured in China and go into various dishes there. What is interesting is that the stings from these jellyfish can be harmful to humans even though it is safe to ingest them.

So, have you learned about a type of jellyfish that you never knew about?


Submit a Comment

  • profile image

    antdonio 4 years ago

    this crap is somewhat good I give it a 4 from 1-10

  • profile image

    Elizabeth 4 years ago

    I think there is another type of jellyfish called the mid-water jellyfish, but i do not know too much about it if that helps any.

  • profile image

    mamaz 4 years ago

    I love jellyfish because there are cute and pretty and like water

  • profile image

    hi 5 years ago


  • vibesites profile image

    vibesites 5 years ago from United States

    I think that box jellyfish is the same one I saw on Finding Nemo?

  • profile image

    909090909 5 years ago

    wow cool info

  • profile image

    nun u yo bees wax 5 years ago

    i just found a baby jellyfish in reding california!!!

  • Volitans profile image

    Volitans 5 years ago from Seattle

    Jellies, and cnidarians in general, are truly fascinating critters. I'd love to keep an upside-down jellyfish some day.

  • profile image

    hriuodhtoiyghrfcyuoiftjvb 5 years ago

    hello dear people

  • Shaddie profile image

    Shaddie 5 years ago from Washington state

    Moon jellies are my favorite :)

  • edelhaus profile image

    edelhaus 5 years ago from Munich, Germany

    Jellyfish have a wonderful ethereal quality, like gossamer floating on a breeze. There's something really poetic about them and just like a rose their beauty is potentially dangerous. They're most beautiful when "swimming," as long as its not anywhere near me! Great article.

  • profile image

    carahoyler 6 years ago

    I absolutely love jellyfish and would have to bravely say that I am in love with the Australian Box Jellyfish. The picture you published of him is just stellar. So intriguing and super fun read.

  • CZCZCZ profile image

    CZCZCZ 6 years ago from Oregon

    Interesting hub on Jellyfish it was unique and interesting to read thanks for sharing the information.

  • profile image

    123 6 years ago


  • profile image

    herbert 6 years ago

    A jelly fish stung me on the bottom once.

  • Hello, hello, profile image

    Hello, hello, 6 years ago from London, UK

    Wow, you done some terrific work there and thank you for a very interesting hub.

  • Robin J. Storm profile image

    Robin J. Storm 6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

    I love these kinds of articles about mysterious sea creatures. Jellyfish can kill or be harmless, very fascinating world huh?

  • DOGS 101 profile image

    DOGS 101 6 years ago from Planet Earth

    Never knew there were that many kinds of jellyfish. Thanks for the education. However, I doubt if I would ever come in contact with those jellyfish.

  • dallas93444 profile image

    Dallas W Thompson 6 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

    As a scuba diver, I enjoyed this article!

    Flag up!

  • Granny's House profile image

    Granny's House 6 years ago from Older and Hopefully Wiser Time

    I have been stung by jellyfish. They are beautiful but boy they can smart!

  • 24news profile image

    24news 6 years ago from India

    Great hub!!! i have heard about Jellyfish but don't know the details and types. thanks for sharing.... simply vote up this article....