The Science of Sustainability

Producer's Notes: Amazing Jellies

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The longest animals in the world aren’t what you’d imagine.

What are the longest animals in the world? Hint: you’ve most likely never heard of them. They glow in the dark and have many stomachs, mouths and tentacles – sometimes hundreds. They’re about the width of a broomstick, but they can grow to be more than 100 feet long. So although blue whales are bulkier, some species of this marine animal are longer.

They’re called siphonophores (that’s pronounced sigh-FAWN-oh-for) and they’re cousins to the jellyfish you can see at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Aliens, giant caterpillars, tropical flowers: siphonophores resemble all three. And in today’s QUEST television story you’ll have a unique opportunity to see footage of the siphonophores that live in the Monterey Bay, courtesy of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute.

This week’s story also features a behind-the-scenes visit to the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s jellyfish exhibit. And I can promise you that you’ve never seen the orange sea nettles in the giant blue tank quite like you’ll see them in this story.

Watch the Amazing Jellies & Siphonophores television story online.

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Category: Biology, Partners, Television

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Gabriela Quirós

About the Author ()

Gabriela Quirós is a TV Producer for KQED Science & Environment. She started her journalism career in 1993 as a newspaper reporter in Costa Rica, where she grew up. She won two national reporting awards there for series on C-sections and organic agriculture, and developed a life-long interest in health reporting. She moved to the Bay Area in 1996 to study documentary filmmaking at the University of California-Berkeley, where she received master’s degrees in journalism and Latin American studies. She joined KQED as a TV producer when QUEST started in 2006 and has covered everything from Alzheimer’s to bee die-offs to dark energy. She has shared two regional Emmys, and four of her stories have been nominated for the award as well. Independent from her work on QUEST, she produced and directed the hour-long documentary Beautiful Sin for PBS, about the surprising story of how Costa Rica became the only country in the world to outlaw in-vitro fertilization.
  • teellbee

    This was a wonderful program. I loved watching the jelly fish drift so elegantly through the sea. The interviews were really interesting gave a lot of information very concisely. Thanks for a terrific production.

  • Gabriela Quiros

    I'm glad you enjoyed the program. QUEST editor Gail Huddleson and I certainly had a great time working with the beautiful footage of jellies that the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) let us use.

    All the best,
    Gabriela Quiros

  • Planktongrl

    Nice story! I enjoyed the way you captured both the beauty of the gelata and the personalities of these researchers.