Jellyfish are marine invertebrates belonging to the Scyphozoa class, and in turn the phylum Cnidaria. The body of an adult jellyfish is composed of a bell-shaped, jellylike substance enclosing its internal structure, from which the creature’s tentacles suspend. Each tentacle is covered with stinging cells (cnidocytes) that can stun or kill other animals: most jellyfish use them to secure prey or as a defense mechanism. Others, such as Rhizostomae, do not have tentacles at all.
To compensate for its lack of basic sensory organs and a brain, the jellyfish exploits its nervous system and rhopalia to perceive stimuli, such as light or odor, and orchestrate expedient responses. In its adult form, it is composed of 94-98% water and can be found in every pelagic area of the world.
Most jellyfish are passive drifters that feed on small fish and zooplankton that become caught in their tentacles. Jellyfish have an incomplete digestive system, meaning that the same orifice is used for both food intake and waste expulsion. They are made up of a layer of epidermis, gastrodermis, and a thick jellylike layer called mesoglea that separates the epidermis from the gastrodermis.
Since jellyfish do not biologically qualify as actual “fish”, the term “jellyfish” is considered a misnomer by some, who instead employ the names “jellies” or “sea jellies”. The name “jellyfish” is also often used to denote either Hydrozoa or the box jellyfish, Cubozoa.
Source: Wikipedia – The Free Encyclopedia