Up to 30 new marine species have been discovered by scientists in Aussie waters recently – including what may be the longest animal in the world. 


In some pretty exciting news that probably slipped under your radar this week, scientists discovered what they reckon is the longest animal in the world, off the coast of Western Australia. And no, it’s not a type of whale. 

Known as a siphonophore, this creature from the deep, kind of looks like a stringy UFO. Or a spiral electric current. Scientists estimate it to be 45m long, making this particular siphonophore almost twice as long as a blue whale. Yep. He a real long boi. 

A siphonophore is a colony of zooids, cell clusters that clone themselves to make one, long, string-like creature. They’re predators and have tentacles to sting and paralyse fish and crustaceans. 

Along with this epic discovery, there were also a bunch of other crazy marine creatures found too – long tailed sea cucumbers, glass sponges, and a colony of, what appears to be upside-down jellyfish. Cute! 


The expedition was headed by Nerida Wilson, a senior research scientist at the Western Australian Museum, in collaboration with the Schmidt Ocean Institute. They used a deep-sea robot, named SuBasatian, to dive into unexplored canyons off the coast of Western Australia – reaching up to 4,400m deep. Though to the surprise of the scientists onboard the research ship, the siphonophore was discovered at 620m deep.


Photos thanks to Schmidt Ocean Institute