Over the past 15 years, MBARI researchers have observed and collected numerous specimens of three types of Atolla-like jellies that lack the typical trailing tentacle.
At first, researchers thought they were looking at an Atolla but this curly tentacled creature lacked the defining trailing tail. Upon closer inspection, they realized this jellyfish had never been seen before. So they gave it the name Atolla reynoldsi in honor of the Aquarium’s first volunteer Jeff Reynolds.
The jelly was named Atolla reynoldsi in honor of the first volunteer at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, MBARI’s education and conservation partner. …Atolla reynoldsi, a large new species of deep-sea crown jelly with distinctive thorny projections around the margin of its bell.
The newly discovered jelly is also very rare.
A. reynoldsi is not common—MBARI researchers have only observed 10 specimens between April 2006 and June 2021. So far, this species is only known from Monterey Bay and lives at depths of 1,013 to 3,189 meters (3,323 to 10,463 feet).