Bolinopsis infundibulum

Common Northern Comb Jelly

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Common Northern Comb Jelly



 Bolinopsis infundibulum is a medium-sized, oblong shaped comb jelly. It may reach up to 15 cm in length. It is completely transparent or, more rarely, a milkish white colour. It swims with eight longitudinal combs, four long rows and four short rows, that give the comb jellies (ctenophores) their characteristic shimmering appearance. These combs consist of plates of transverse rows of hairs that beat in waves downwards, which produces the shimmering effect. These plates are phosphorescent at night. Bolinopsis infundibulum only has two small tentacles with fringes along its sides.Bolinopsis infundibulum is carnivorous and feeds on copepods, euphausids and other zooplankton. Prey are funneled on to the mucous-covered loral flaps with the aid of ciliated structures known as auricles. Cilia transport the captured food to the mouth (Gamble, 1977).

Like all ctenophores, this species swims by means of 8 ciliated (ctene) rows which meet at the aboral side and run down the sides of the body. This ctenophore is a lobate ctenophore, meaning that it has two large lobes at its oral end (to the right in the photo above). It has small tentacles of 2 different kinds near the mouth, between the lobes. One type of tentacle is branched and arises from sheaths near the mouth. The other type is small but abundant, in tracts leading to the mouth. The body surface of this species is smooth and colorless except for rows of dark spots which continue along the body in the same line as the ctene rows (photo). The ctene rows are not all the same length, and run only 1/2 to 2/3 the length of the body. In large individuals these spots may be coalesced into lines. Length to 15 cm, usually smaller.


Cold water species. Found in the Barents Sea, White Sea, Bering Sea, Chukchi Sea, East-Siberian Sea.





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