While collecting geological samples from the seafloor, one of the NOAA's remotely-operated submarines stumbled across a mysterious “ghostlike” octopod.
The discovery came on February 27, at 4,290 meters (14,075 feet) below sea level in the waters surrounding the Hawaiian Archipelago. Most remarkably – aside from the creature’s exceptional cuteness – the octopod is thought to be an unknown species, perhaps even belonging to an undescribed genus.
On its website, the NOAA said: “A distinctive characteristic was that the suckers were in one, rather than two, series on each arm. This animal was particularly unusual because it lacked the pigment cells, called chromatophores, typical of most cephalopods, and it did not seem very muscular."
They added, “The appearance of this animal was unlike any published records and was the deepest observation ever for this type of cephalopod.”
You can watch a video of the simultaneously confused and excited scientists seeing the octopod for the first time below.
[H/T: Popular Science]