A mysterious sea creature caught in the United States had netizens spooked before its identity was revealed.
Footage posted on Facebook by Sarah Vasser-Alford showed the orange critter wriggling its long, curly tendrils after she caught it off the coast of Alaska.
Sarah’s mother had reeled in the strange catch during a halibut-fishing expedition in August to Prince of Wales Island, Mirror UK reported.
The eerie video, initially captioned just “crazy deep sea creature”, has racked up over a million views and 19,000 shares on the social-networking site.
Hundreds of netizens were left baffled by unusual-looking creature said it was ‘an alien’ and a ‘live coral’ among other things.
Others said they were reminded of horror movies like Alien.
There were also apprehensions expressed about its safety.
But the mystery was solved after Sarah updated the post to identify the creature as a Basket Star, a species of echinoderm group known as brittle stars that hang out on the ocean floor to trap prey with the help of forked and spiny, usually five, tentacles.
Their long, thin arms are “distinctly set off from the small disk-shaped body,” according to Encyclopedia Britannica.
Sarah also assured the commenters that the Basket Star had been “placed back in the water unharmed.”
Last month, it was a two-mouthed fish which had piqued the interest of netizens after the deformed catch was caught by a New York resident while she was out fishing with her husband.