Nautiluses are an order of cephalopods that live between 100 to 300 metres down in the ocean. Nautiluses have changed very little during the last 500 million years or so, and where there were once hundreds of species there are now only six that remain today. The nautilus' coiled shell has a series of chambers filled with gas, into and out of which it can pump fluid when it needs to dive or ascend. These shells show some of the most amazing spirals in nature.
Scientific name: Nautilida
Swimming up from the deep ocean, a young chambered nautilus is an incredible living fossil.
Eight hundred metres below sea level, a living fossil lurks. The chambered nautilus is an ancient relative of the squid and the octopus. It migrates upwards from these depths every night to feed on the tiny shrimp by the Great Barrier Reef wall, returning back to the darkness during the day. This clip shows the first images of a baby chambered nautilus, no bigger than a two pound coin, as it propels itself forward by squirting water.
Marcus du Sautoy reveals how the nautilus uses a simple mathematical principle to build an elegant spiral shell.
Marcus du Sautoy reveals how the nautilus uses a simple mathematical principle to build an elegant spiral shell and how The Code can be found throughout the natural world.
The clumsy descendant of one of the ocean's top predators 400 million years ago.
The nautilus usually hunts around 500m down, risking an ascent to the surface for the abundant scavenging opportunities only when the water becomes colder and during the darkness of a new moon. Filming opportunities are few and far between and, as specific behaviour is related to very particular environmental conditions, observation of reported discoveries can be hard.
Discover the other animals and plants that lived during the following geological time periods.
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