A mysterious object found deep on the seafloor has created a buzz. Researchers from NOAA Ocean Exploration found the yellowish object while diving on a small seamount in the Gulf of Alaska. Initially referred to as ‘yellow hat’, the still-unidentified object is now being dubbed as ‘golden egg’ or ‘golden orb’.
What does the object look like?
NOAA Ocean Exploration shared a blog detailing the object. “Amid a smattering of white sponges, this smooth, gold, dome-shaped specimen, a little over 10 centimeters (4 inches) in diameter, was tightly adhered to a rock. A small hole or tear near its base revealed a similarly colored interior,” the blog explained.
“As cameras zoomed in, scientists were stumped as to its identification, with initial thoughts ranging from a dead sponge attachment, to coral, to an egg casing,” it added.
What did researchers say about this object?
“Isn’t the deep sea so delightfully strange? While we were able to collect the ‘golden orb’ and bring it onto the ship, we still are not able to identify it beyond the fact that it is biological in origin,” said Sam Candio, an expedition coordinator at NOAA Ocean Exploration.
He further explained that they plan to investigate more about the object in a laboratory setting using the “collective expertise of the scientific community” and “more sophisticated tools”.
“While somewhat humbling to be stumped by this finding, it serves as a reminder of how little we know about our own planet and how much is left to learn and appreciate about our ocean,” he added.
How did netizens react to the ‘golden egg’?
NOAA Ocean Exploration also took to social media to share the news with netizens, and it prompted people to post varied reactions. “That looks like an interesting colony of something,” wrote an individual on X. “Rocket component?” wondered another. “Wow. Very interesting,” added a third.
It is still unclear that the ‘golden egg’ is associated with a new species or represents the unknown life stage of an existing one. However, researchers are working to unveil its mysteries.
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