Marrus orthocanna

(no common name)

M. orthrocanna is a species of pelagic (open ocean) siphonophore found deep arctic waters. like all siphonophores M.orthrocanna is composed of arrangements of zooids that are linked together by a long stem and on said stem there are a number of nectophores which allow the colony to move through the water column. at the bottom of the animal is a short orange region called the siphosome which houses the zooids that collect food for the colony. they arent the largest of siphonophores but they can get fairly large growing up to 3-9 ft long and 20 in wide and they totally look like a rocket taking off…




Marrus Orthocanna

The Deep Sea Siphonophore are long creatures. They can get as long as 50 meters. The majority of them, are long and thin, and they consist of mostly gelatinous material. Some species, have dark orange or red digestive stystems that are transparent tissue like. They are majoly fragile and can break into tiny pieces if under the slightest force.


The habitat of the Deep Sea Siphonophore is described to be just the open sea. Very rarely are any found new the shore. Some species, like the Portuguese Man O’War, live at the surface of the sea. Siphonophores are predators of the sea. They eat their prey by capturing them in their tentacles. They mostly eat crustaceans and small fish.


All zooids in a given siphonophore, are descended from a single fertilized egg. Then, the egg will develop into a protozooid, a polyp that rises though budding to all the other zooids of the colony.


Author: Taighler R

Date: 05/2008


source 2

Like other siphonophores, Marrus orthocanna is a colony composed of a number of specialised zooids linked together by a long stem.[4][5] At the front is the pneumatophore, an orange-coloured, gas-filled float. Behind this is the nectosome, a region where there are a number of translucent nectophores with red, unlooped radial canals. These are bell-shaped medusae specialised for locomotion. When they contract, water is expelled which causes the colony to move. Their contractions are coordinated which enables the animal to swim forwards, sidewards or backwards. The remaining region is the siphosome. Most of the zooids here are polyps, specialised for collecting food. They do this for the whole colony, spreading their single long tentacles in the water to snare prey. Other zooids in this region undertake digestion and assimilation of food items. Reproductive medusae are found among the polyps in the siphosome and also various other specialised zooids. The various forms are all arranged in a repeating pattern.[4][5]

Marrus orthocanna occurs pelagically in the mesopelagic zone of the Arctic Ocean, the north west Pacific Ocean, the Bering Sea, the Sea of Okhotsk, the north Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea.[6] It is found at depths ranging between 200 and 800 m (660 and 2,600 ft). The greatest depth at which it has been observed is about 2,000 m (6,600 ft).[5] At these depths the temperature is about 4 °C (39 °F), hardly any light penetrates from the surface and human observation is limited to what can be seen from submersible craft.[7]

Marrus orthocanna can be several metres long and the tentacles can extend fifty centimetres on either side. It moves forward intermittently before pausing to put out its “fishing lines”, ready to ensnare passing creatures. It is a carnivore whose diet is thought to consist mainly of small crustaceans such as decapodskrillcopepods and mysids.[5]

This colonial animal arises from a single fertilised egg. The protozooid that develops from this subsequently buds to form the other members of the colony which are thus genetically identical. The protozooid first thins and elongates, the middle section becoming the stem of the colony. The pneumatophore forms at the opposite end to the mouth. Next a growth zone on the thin stem forms and budding occurs with the formation of the nectophores. As the stem continues lengthening, further zooids develop above these. Another growth zone sees the development of the siphosome and the continuing elongation of the stem carries these zooids down with it.[4] The division of labour between the zooids is an evolutionary advance in the constant struggle for existence in the deep sea. Such organisms asMarrus orthocanna blur the boundaries between the individual polyp and the whole colonial organism; each cannot exist without the other.[8]

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