<p>Most beautiful mediterranean sea star underwater photo</p>

Most beautiful mediterranean sea star underwater photo

Shutterstock / Vojce

Many of us are familiar with the iconic animated series SpongeBob SquarePants, in which the main protagonist, a yellow sea sponge named SpongeBob, and his best friend Patrick Star, a pink starfish who lived under a rock, voyaged into new adventures daily in the vast world of Bikini Bottom.

Now, marine biologists seem to have found the real SpongeBob Squarepants and Patrick Star hanging out together in real life.

The two pals were spotted on the side of the Retriever seamount, which is about 200 miles east of New York City.

“I normally avoid these references... but WOW. REAL LIFE SpongeBob and Patrick!” said Christopher Mah, a marine biologist with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

A remotely operated vehicle (ROV) launched from the NOAA’s Okeanos Explorer ship noticed the sea animals.

In a subsequent tweet from Mah, he noted that the sea animals are a Hertwigia (sponge) and Chondraster (starfish).

“I thought it would be funny to make the comparison, which for once was actually kind of comparable to the iconic images/colors of the cartoon characters,” Mah told Insider.

He also added that with his expertise in marine biology and specializes in “sea stars,” many depictions of Patrick and Spongebob aren’t correct.

Several people responded to Mah’s tweet with jokes and excitement.

“It’s real! The best friendship in the world,” someone wrote.

You just know they were cutting it up right before the camera came... they were like FREEZE,” another added.

Someone else quipped that other members of Bikini Bottom need to be discovered and wrote: “Now we just need Skodwarde and MOAR Krabs.”

Since 2009, the NOAA’s Okeanos mission has been underway, intending to learn more about the seas and seafloor off the coast of the United States.

“With the mission to explore the ocean for national benefit, NOAA Ocean Exploration is the only U.S. federal organization dedicated to exploring the deep ocean. We are filling gaps in the basic understanding of U.S. deep waters and the seafloor and delivering the ocean information needed to strengthen the economy, health, and security of the United States,” the organisation’s mission reads, in part on its website.

This wouldn’t be the first time that a Patrick Star-type starfish was seen in person.

A snapshot of a starfish that looked like Patrick Star went viral on Twitter in 2019 for a fairly ‘naughty’ reason.

The starfish in the photo appears to have a peachy bottom, or “thicc a**,” as its uploader, Akari, who goes by @Babyshoujo described it.

Akari shared the photo on Twitter at the end of last month after seeing the amusing animal at the Aquarium of the Pacific in California.

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