Jellyfish Larger than Blue Whales?
Published:20 Jul.2020    Source:WHOI

Recent accounts in the media have described the appearance of lion’s mane jellyfish in waters and beaches in the Northeast as a surprising, sometimes troubling, event, with record sizes and numbers reported from Maine to the Massachusetts south coast. But is this event noteworthy? Or, as some have implied, is it a sign of failing ocean health? Three WHOI marine biologists weighed in to put events into perspective.

Several news stories have described one or more jellies that washed ashore as the largest on record or that the lion’s mane jelly is the largest animal in the ocean. Both of those claims are not entirely true or difficult to corroborate. For one, it’s challenging to accurately measure a jelly out of the water, as gravity will compress and spread the bell, which makes up most of a its mass. A bell measuring four feet across on the beach would appear much smaller if the same animal were floating in the water.