Chambered Nautilus

on July 31, 2007
Polar Bear


To keep itself afloat and upright, the chambered nautilus has a tube called a siphuncle that runs down the center of each chamber and releases a gas, maintaining a density close to that of sea water. This allows the chambered nautilus to swim about with a minimum of effort. The information for this design was part of God’s provision for this creature at its creation; this feature did not evolve.


  • The spiral-shaped shell of the nautilus has a pattern of brown and white.
  • The creature creates up to 30 different chambers within its shell that it will occupy as it grows. A tough hood protects the nautilus where its body connects to its shell.

Fun Facts

  • This species is probably the most common nautilus.
  • The chambered nautilus also has small tentacles that it uses to swim or pull itself along rocks.
  • In the daytime it descends about 2,000 ft (610 m) into the deep and at night it rises to a depth of 300–500 ft (90–150 m) to feed.
  • The nautilus has an unusually long life span for a cephalopod; it may live for more than 15 years.

CLASS: Cephalopoda (octopuses and squids)

ORDER: Nautilida (nautilus)

FAMILY: Nautilidae (chambered nautilus)

GENUS/SPECIES: Nautilus pompilius

Size: Up to 8 in (20 cm) long

Depth: Up to 1,640 ft (500 m)

Diet: Crabs and shrimp

Habitat: In the water column where the slopes of coral reefs descend into deep waters

Aquarium Guide

With fun facts about more than 100 animals, this long-awaited Aquarium Guide includes beautiful pictures and reveals the incredible facts and design features that point to our amazing Creator. This handy size guide is excellent for school field trips and family trips to your favorite aquarium!

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