Fascinating Facts on the Jellyfish

  • They date from pre-dinosaur times
  • Jellyfish have been around for millions of years, even before dinosaurs lived on the Earth. Pulsing along on our ocean currents, these jelly-like creatures can be found in waters both cold and warm, deep and shallow and along coastlines, too.
  • They can reach 2m length and 2kg weight
  • The lion’s mane jellyfish, also known as the giant jellyfish or the hair jelly, is the largest known species of jellyfish. Its range is confined to cold, boreal waters of the Arctic, northern Atlantic, and northern Pacific Oceans. The largest recorded specimen was measured off the coast of Massachusetts in 1865 and had a bell with a diameter of 213 cm (7 feet) and tentacles around 34 m (112 feet) long.
  • Jellyfish have no brain, heart, bones or eyes
  • Instead, jellyfish have nerve nets which sense changes in the environment and coordinate the animal’s responses.
  • Some species can be bioluminescent, which means they produce their own light
  • The deep sea is ruled by darkness. Sunlight does not penetrate much beyond 60 meters (about 200 feet) below the ocean’s surface.  Some organisms have developed the ability to glow. Bioluminescence is light produced by a chemical process within a living organism. The glow occurs when a substance called luciferin reacts with oxygen. This releases energy, and light is emitted.
  • The jellyfish’s mouth is found in the centre of its body. From this small opening, it both eats and discards waste
  • And it serves another purpose, too – by squirting a jet of water from its mouth, the jellyfish can propel forward
  • The jellyfish itself provides a tasty meal for other ocean creatures, particularly sea turtles, who like to guzzle them up regularly.
  • Turtles eat jellyfish, and larger jellies may eat smaller ones, but are jellyfish fit for human consumption? A group of high school students in Japan came up with a salted caramel recipe that uses powered jellyfish. It’s not vegan for sure, but it is one way to deal with an invasive jellyfish bloom.
  • Jellyfish, in contact with skin, may cause irritation/burns. There are species in the world whose burns can be deadly
  • Another jellyfish-derived product takes advantage of the jellies’ fluorescent protein, and could be used to power medical devices in the future.

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