Predatory tunicate

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Predatory tunicate
Megalodicopia hians.jpg
A drawing of the predatory tunicate Megalodicopia hians
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Tunicata
Class: Ascidiacea
Order: Phlebobranchia
Family: Octacnemidae
Genus: Megalodicopia
Species: M. hians
Binomial name
Megalodicopia hians
Oka, 1918 [1]

The predatory tunicate (Megalodicopia hians) is a species of tunicate which lives anchored along the deep sea canyon walls and seafloor, waiting for tiny animals to drift or swim into its hood-shaped mouth. This sea creature is said to look like a cross between a jellyfish and a Venus Flytrap, its mouthlike hood is quick to close when a small animal drifts inside. Once the predatory tunicate catches a meal, it keeps its trap shut until it is ready to eat again. Sometimes called the Ghostfish, they are known to live in the Monterey Canyon at depths of 200–1,000 metres (660–3,280 ft). They mostly eat zooplankton and tiny animals.


  1. ^ Karen Sanamyan (2010). Noa Shenkar; Arjan Gittenberger; Gretchen Lambert; Marc Rius; Rosana Moreira Da Rocha; Billie J. Swalla, eds. "Megalodicopia Oka, 1918". World Ascidiacea Database. World Register of Marine Species. Retrieved June 28, 2011.