Moscow: An international team of scientists has discovered a new species of luminous creatures in the Red Sea.
The new species were found to be living in colonies as garlands of 'fluorescent lanterns' and emitting a green glow.
During the investigations of the biodiversity of coral reefs of the archipelago Farasan (Saudi Arabia, south of the Red Sea), biologists found what they have termed "fluorescent lanterns," that were very similar to hydrae.
"Sea hydroids, unlike hydrae, are often found in colonies and canbranch off tiny jellyfish," said one of the study authors Vyacheslav Ivanenko from Moscow State University in Russia.
"The unusual green glow of these hydrozoas (presumably, a new species of the genus Cytaeis) was revealed in the peristomal area of the body," Ivanenko noted.
The researchers suggested that glow around the mouth of polyps may attract prey.
The research also showed that the localisation of glow in certain parts of the body can help to distinguish different species of organisms that have identical structure.
The results of the study were published in the journal PLOS ONE.
(With Agency inputs)