Box jellyfish larva stage (Carybdea alata), SEM

Box jellyfish larva stage (Carybdea alata), SEM

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Credit: DENNIS KUNKEL MICROSCOPY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of Larva stage (planula) of a box jellyfish (Carybdea alata). This box jellyfish belongs to the Cubozoa group of Cnidarians. The larval stage of Cnidarians is called the planula and it is a free swimming developmental stage. Cubozoan planulae are pear-shaped, have pigment spots that may be sensitive to light, and swim for a few days using cilia. After a planula settles, it grows into a polyp. The cubozoan polyp can crawl around and bud off more polyps. Like all cnidarians, cubozoans possess nematocysts, cells that fire a barb and transfer venom. When a nematocyst contacts something that might be prey or predator, the barb uncoils and fires from the capsule along with toxic venom. Magnification x200 when shortest axis printed at 25 millimetres.

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Keywords: 24355c, alata, alatina, alatinidae, box, carybdea, carybdeida, cnidaria, cnidarian, coelenterate, colored, coloured, cubozoa, electron, false-colored, false-coloured, fish, invertebrate, invertebrates, jelly, jellyfish, larvae, marine, micrograph, plankton, planula, planulae, polyp, salt, saltwater, scanning, sea, seawater, sem, water, zooplankton

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