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Are Jellyfish Increasing in World’s Oceans?

February 2, 2012 Comments off

sciencedaily.com

Giant jellyfish clog fishing nets in Japan. (Photo Credit: Shin-ichi Uye)

A global study has questioned claims that jellyfish are increasing worldwide.

Blooms, or proliferation, of jellyfish have shown a substantial, visible impact on coastal populations — clogged nets for fishermen, stinging waters for tourists, even choked intake lines for power plants — and recent media reports have created a perception that the world’s oceans are experiencing increases in jellyfish due to human activities such as global warming and overharvesting of fish. Now, a new global and collaborative study questions claims that jellyfish are increasing worldwide and suggests claims are not supported with any hard evidence or scientific analyses to date.

Dr Cathy Lucas, a marine biologist at the University of Southampton, who is based at the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton was involved in the study, which appears in the latest issue of BioScience. Her co-authors are composed of experts from the Global Jellyfish Group, a consortium of approximately 30 experts on gelatinous organisms, climatology, oceanography and socioeconomics from around the globe, that Read more…