Zeela are arthropoids native to the Brinstar sector of the planet Zebes, which sport long eyestalks. They are agile creatures, and can climb walls and hang onto ceilings with little problem. They appear to fill the same niche as the Geemers of Crateria and Norfair, and like them, Zeelas seem to be nothing more than indigenous lifeforms and not a biological weapon used by the Space Pirates.
They come in three known subspecies: Green, Yellow, and Red, although it has been stated that a blue-hued variety also exist. They are all identical in behavior to Geemers.
Extinct or Extant?
Zeela seem to have gone extinct when Zebes exploded.
There is very little evidence to support the theory that the Zeela are an extant species. The only Zeela spotted since the destruction of their home planet was on board the Biologic Space Laboratory Research Station (or BSL for short) during the time that Samus Aran was also to be found there. However, many Zebesian species were also found aboard the vessel. Considering that specimens from the nearby SR388 were also on board, and the knowledge that these were collected by the scientists, this could be presumed about the Zebesian species, too, as opposed to them being brought onboard by Space Pirates.
However, they were spotted on board the BSL—unfortunately, these had all already consumed by the X, and were nothing but X-Copies. If some Zeelas escaped being consumed by the X, they would still have been destroyed soon after when the BSL was obliterated in its own self-destruct sequence; this means any and all specimens aboard this vessel would be extinct, as well.
Due to their planet exploding and no provable surviving population having yet shown itself, the Zeelas are considered extinct.