A marine creature that resembles the alien E.T. has been found growing in a prehistoric area of eastern Pacific seafloor rock.
The “E.T. sponge” has been classified as a new species and genus by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
The creature was found in “an extraordinary seascape” 7,875 feet down, where strange looking creatures appeared to be growing from the rocky seafloor, NOAA says.
This “Forest of the Weird” — nearly 850 miles southwest of Hawaii — included an “alien-like community” of glass sponges that appeared to look back at the deep sea explorers with pink faces, NOAA reported.
“The shape of this sponge is reminiscent of an alien, like in the movies, with what looks like a long thin neck, an elongated head and huge eyes. Advhena is from the Latin advena, which means alien. … While we haven’t ‘officially’ given it a common name in our paper, ‘E.T. sponge’ seems to fit.”
A sample of the E.T. sponge was take during a five-hour deep sea dive at the Pigafetta Seamount in the eastern Pacific, NOAA says.
The seamount is a flat-topped area of rock created by volcanic activity, NOAA reports. It is “quite old,” dating to the Cretaceous Period of 65.5 to 145.5 million years ago.
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