The Diversity of Cnidarians

What is a Cnidarian?

Let's start with the root word. Cnidaria is a phylum under Kingdom Animalia containing over 11,000 species of animals found exclusively in aquatic environments: they are predominantly marine. Their distinguishing feature is cnidocytes, which are specialized cells that they use mainly for capturing prey.

That's a lot of fancy science lingo!

Let me show you some organisms you've likely seen before!

Cnidarians can be broken down into four major classes.

Scyphozoa (jellies):

Cubozoa (box jellies, sea wasp):

Anthozoa (sea anenomies, sea pens, and corals):