Nomura’s jellyfish threatens Japanese fishing industry

Swarms of giant Nomura’s jellyfish are about to descend on the waters off Japan, putting the country’s fishing industry at serious risk.

Nomura’s jellyfish grow up to 2 meters (6 feet 7 inches) in diameter and weigh up to 220 kilograms (450 pounds), and are commonly found in the waters between China and Japan. Scientists have detected unprecedented numbers heading to Japan, in what local media has described as a “jellyfish typhoon.”

Nomura’s jellyfish populations have surged previously during 1958 and 1995, dealing a huge blow to Japan’s fishing industry. The jellyfish, which are as large as a man, damage nets and kill fish with venom, decreasing available fish stocks. They also sting fisherman, creating an often risky situation when caught.

Although numbers this year aren’t known yet, during the 2005 surge an estimated 300 to 500 million Nomura’s jelly fish passed through the Tsushima Strait between South Korea and Japan every day. They’re also hard to get rid off, releasing millions of offspring into the water when they are attacked or killed.

More details on Wikipedia here.

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