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Any of nearly 90 species (phylum Ctenophora) of usually colourless marine invertebrates that have a series of vertical ciliary combs over their bodies. Ctenophores are sometimes mistaken for jellyfish. The body is round or spherical, with tentacles to capture food, and the combs beat to provide locomotion. Most species are small (not much greater than 0.1 in. [3 mm] in diameter), but at least one species grows larger than 3 ft (1 m). Ctenophores live in almost all ocean regions, floating freely in the water. All comb jellies except one parasitic species are carnivores, consuming young mollusks, crustacean and fish larvae, copepods, and other zooplankton.
Variants of CTENOPHORE
ctenophore or comb jelly
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on ctenophore, visit Britannica.com.