Carlos Duarte, researcher at the IMEDEA (UIB-CSIC), participates in an international study that questions the growth of global jellyfish populations

jellyfish imedeaAn international study with the participation of the IMEDEA (UIB-CSIC) researcher Carlos Duarte brings a new perspective about the proliferation of jellyfish in the oceans, a phenomenon that has had a visible impact on beaches around the world during the last years. The study determines that there are no conclusive evidence that jellyfish populations are growing. According to the researchers, there has been indeed an increase of these populations in some regions, but there are others where it has decreased or fluctuated. In this sense, one of the keys of the study is to understand long-term data.“The main point of the study is that from now on we will pool the data and be able to support theories with science, rather than speculation”, says Carlos Duarte, one of the researchers leading the Global Jellyfish Group project, a consortium of 30 experts in gelatinous organisms, climatology, oceanography and socioeconomics in which this study takes place.

A global database

In order to monitor the evolution of these populations, scientists work on a global database which will contain information collected since 1750. The analysis of this repository will allow researchers to understand the relationship between human activity and the flourishing of jellyfish.


Robert H. Condon, William M. Graham, Carlos M. Duarte, Kylie A. Pitt, Cathy H. Lucas, Steven H. HaddocK, Kelly R. Sutherland, Kelly l. Robinson, Michael N. Dawson, Mary Beth Decker, Claudia E. Mills, Jennifer E. Purcell, AlenKa Malej, Hermes Mianzan, Shin-Ichi Uve, Stefan Gelcich, Laurence P. Madin. Questioning the Rise of Gelatinous Zooplankton in the World’s Oceans. DOI:10.1525/bio.2012.62.2.9.

Source and photo: CSIC

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