In Aquatic News… Swim Peacefully with Thousands of Jellyfish

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First Palau Jellyfish… (because it is such an interesting video – San Diego videos below)

On Eil Malk Island in Palau, you can swim with jellyfish without getting stung. This marine lake was once connected to the ocean, but as the island changed, it was cut off. Now in isolation, it’s filled with a jellyfish species found nowhere else. With no predators to keep them in check and plentiful algae to feed on, these golden jellyfish swarm and fill the lake like a cloudy dream. Ready for a swim?

Could Jellyfish Invade San Diego?

Well, yes. It has already happened.

San Diego Jellyfish #1

In May of 2016, Fox 5 San Diego reported, “Thousands of mesmerizing jellyfish have invaded the waters of Mission Bay and to the surprise of some swimmers, they didn’t get stung.

A group paddle boarding in Mission Bay encountered a moon jellyfish bloom in Mission Bay. The moon jellyfish is usually about 10 – 16 inches in diameter and can be recognized by its four horseshoe-shaped gonads in the center of the circular body. They tend to have a six-month lifespan.

Moon jellyfish rarely sting humans, and if they do the impact is not normally felt.

“Moon jellies have a really weak sting so unless you get it in your mouth or in a cut you won’t even feel them,” said Vincent Levesque, an aquarist at the Birch Aquarium.

“We first start seeing them in January normally and they can last up through June or July, but it really depends on the food in the water column,” said Levesque.”

San Diego Jellyfish #2

On August 18th 2016 10 News San Diego reported, “Birch Aquarium specialists said the Australian spotted jellyfish have been around the area for 20 years, but their numbers may be increasing due to rising water temperatures.

“It’s like an alien cauliflower,” said Coronado Cays resident Daron Case, who goes by “Captain of the Cays.”

Case said he first noticed the jellyfish last summer but noted there are definitely more this year.

“They’re about the size of a basketball,” he said.

Case told 10News some people are now afraid to go in the water, adding, “They’re definitely scared to swim in the bay. None of them like to see these jellyfish because of course they’re afraid of getting stung.”

Birch Senior Aquarist Vince Levesque said the sting is very weak and won’t even make it through your skin.”

San Diego Jellyfish #3

Not to be outdone… On Feb 17, 2016, NBC San Diego reports, “Even though the sea slugs and moon jellies are native, El Nino’s warm currents have brought some unfamiliar species north, explained Shane.
In September 2015, rare Australian Spotted Jellyfish were seen throughout South Bay.
It was suspected the jellyfish were swept up in El Nino currents, which led them to San Diego. The jellyfish were taken to the Living Coast Discovery Center in Chula Vista.”

Could It Get Any Worse?

On July 13, 2013, 10 News reported “Rare (Dangerous) black jellyfish spotted off San Diego coast”

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