Though I’m usually out sailing on the water, yesterday afternoon I was running along side of it. Over the infamous dunes that spell out Coronado and past our central lifeguard tower, I was heading north alongside the ocean when I came across a jellyfish; deep purple like a plum. I was so tempted to touch it, but was glad that I didn’t as I later found out that it was a Black Sea Nettle (Chrysaora achlyos), a rare species of jellyfish found only in the Pacific Ocean and often nicknamed the “black jelly”. While sightings are not often, when they appear, they appear in packs and usually during a red tide. How interesting..we’ve got algal bloom right now. Because of the recent increase in zooplankton, what black sea nettles feed on, they have been turning up all over San Diego.
A friend of mine, Marnie Buddo, also an avid sailor, was at the Kona Kai Marina on Shelter Island this past Monday and spotted one just off the shoreline. She took a photo with her phone and posted it on Facebook.
Photo courtesy of Marnie Buddo
Though they are beautiful, beware! Be on watch; they sting.
Enjoy from afar, and snap a picture if you happen to find one.
You can even report a sighting, or track sightings, here: http://www.jellywatch.org/sightings_list . If you scroll down the list, you'll find a user reported multiple sightings of the Black Sea Nettle just a couple days ago.
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