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How do you tackle an invasion of giant jellyfish? Try making sushi
TimesOnline.uk ^ | December 07, 2005 | Richard Lloyd Parry

Posted on 12/07/2005 2:02:16 PM PST by bahblahbah

THEY are called echizen kurage and they sound like monsters from the trashier reaches of Japanese science fiction.

They are 6ft wide and weigh 450lb (200kg), with countless poisonous tentacles, they have drifted across the void to terrorise the people of Japan. Vast armadas of the slimy horrors have cut off the country’s food supply. As soon as one is killed more appear to take its place.

Finally, the quarrelsome governments of the region are banding together to unite against the enemy.

Echizen kurage is not an extraterrestrial invader, but a giant jellyfish that is devastating the livelihoods of fishermen in the Sea of Japan. Nomura’s jellyfish, as it is known in English, is the biggest creature of its kind off Japan and for reasons that remain mysterious its numbers have surged in the past few months.

The problem has become so serious that fishery officials from Japan, China and South Korea are to meet this month for a “jellyfish summit” to discuss strategies for dealing with the invasion. Japan’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party has formed a jellyfish countermeasures committee and fishermen are at work on technology to keep the marauders out of their nets.

The problem first became obvious in the late summer when fishermen chasing anchovies, salmon and yellowtail began finding huge numbers of the jellyfish in their nets.

Often the weight of the echizen kurage broke the nets or crushed the fish to death; those that survived were poisoned and beslimed by their tentacles.

Fishermen on the northern tip of Honshu, Japan’s main island, were forced to suspend work at the height of the lucrative salmon season.

In Akita prefecture some communities saw their incomes fall by 80 per cent. The gizzard shad fishers of South Korea have also been plagued by the Nomura’s.

In some places jellyfish density is reported to be a hundred times higher than normal. Worst of all, no one yet understands why. One theory is that global warming is heating up the seawater and encouraging jellyfish breeding.

Some observers blame heavy rains in China over the summer, which flowed out from rivers and propelled abnormal numbers of jellyfish towards Japan. Nutrients in its river water may have given them extra zip — or overfishing has allowed the growth of the populations of plankton on which the jellyfish feed.

Screens and meshes have been designed that allow fish through but keep out anything bigger, and a web of metal wires can be placed inside a net to chop the jellyfish to pieces.

In the meantime locals are making the best of it — rather than just complaining about jellyfish they are eating them.

Jellyfish are an unusual ingredient of Japanese cuisine but are much more prized in China. Coastal communities are doing their best to promote jellyfish as a novelty food, sold dried and salted.

Students in Obama have managed to turn them into tofu, and jellyfish collagen is reported to be beneficial to the skin.

SEA MONSTERS # The most poisonous jellyfish is the Australian sea wasp, or box jellyfish, with enough venom to kill 60 people. Wearing tights is an effective defence # The largest jellyfish ever found was a lion’s mane, with a bell 2m (7ft) across, and tentacles extending more than 35m # The notorious Portuguese man o’war is not a jellyfish at all but a collection of different organisms including stinging tentacles # Jellyfish have both male and female characteristics. A group releases sperm and eggs which mix in the water # A collection of jellyfish is known as a smack


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: jellyfish; jellyfsh; marinebiology

1 posted on 12/07/2005 2:02:18 PM PST by bahblahbah
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Comment #2 Removed by Moderator

To: wizard of zot

3 posted on 12/07/2005 2:05:52 PM PST by Senator Bedfellow
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To: bahblahbah
One theory is that global warming is heating up the seawater and encouraging jellyfish breeding.

They're just blaming everything on that. What's the difference? A couple of degrees at the most extreme? like floating 10-50 miles south?

4 posted on 12/07/2005 2:06:56 PM PST by lepton ("It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of a thing he was never reasoned into"--Jonathan Swift)
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To: Senator Bedfellow

They look like the giant blancmanges that invaded Wimbledon and turned everyone they didn't eat into Scotsmen. In that case, the answer also was to eat them.


5 posted on 12/07/2005 2:11:01 PM PST by AuH2ORepublican (http://auh2orepublican.blogspot.com/)
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To: Senator Bedfellow

That looks like good eatin'


6 posted on 12/07/2005 2:12:36 PM PST by SengirV
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To: bahblahbah

thanks so much for this post


7 posted on 12/07/2005 2:12:45 PM PST by Flavius (Qui desiderat pacem, praeparet bellum")
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To: Senator Bedfellow

holy blobules Batman!


8 posted on 12/07/2005 2:12:53 PM PST by finnman69 (cum puella incedit minore medio corpore sub quo manifestu s globus, inflammare animos)
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To: bahblahbah

"They are 6ft wide and weigh 450lb (200kg), with countless poisonous tentacles" Good lord, I'll never go near the ocean again!


9 posted on 12/07/2005 2:13:01 PM PST by dynachrome ("Where am I? Where am I going? Why am I in a handbasket?")
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To: bahblahbah
Some observers blame heavy rains in China over the summer, which flowed out from rivers and propelled abnormal numbers of jellyfish towards Japan. Nutrients in its river water may have given them extra zip — or overfishing has allowed the growth of the populations of plankton on which the jellyfish feed.

In the early 1980's I was SCUBA diving in the Aegean Sea off Greece, the jellyfish were washing up by the thousands on the beach (small ones, about 6"-1' across). The beaches were shut down for swimmers, but for divers (with wetsuits) it was a awesome event to see, hundreds of thousands of jellyfish (quite beautiful) in the water. I would give much to be able to watch a spectacle like this (SCUBA of course), jellyfish this size are a one in a lifetime event.....global warming.......BS.

10 posted on 12/07/2005 2:13:58 PM PST by ScreamingFist ( The RKBA doesn't apply if I have a bigger gun than your bodyguard. NRA)
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To: bahblahbah

Just cross breed them with peanut butter fish...


11 posted on 12/07/2005 2:13:59 PM PST by joesnuffy (A camel once bit my sister-we knew just what to do- gather large rocks & squash her-Mullet Ho'mar)
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To: joesnuffy

Ding ding ding ding ding ding ding ding ding ding ding.

We have a winner.


12 posted on 12/07/2005 2:16:26 PM PST by Andyman ("Where are the other nine?" Luke 17:11-19)
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To: bahblahbah
Jellyfish are an unusual ingredient of Japanese cuisine

Sounds like the perfect theme ingredient for Iron Chef.
ALLEZ CUISINE!

13 posted on 12/07/2005 2:16:28 PM PST by Yo-Yo
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To: joesnuffy

You probably buy peanut butter and jelly in the same jar.

Already mixed up!


14 posted on 12/07/2005 2:19:31 PM PST by elcid1970
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To: bahblahbah

Were is SpongeBob when you need him?


15 posted on 12/07/2005 2:23:04 PM PST by kaktuskid
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To: Yo-Yo

Ship 'em to France, they'll eat anything.


16 posted on 12/07/2005 3:01:02 PM PST by CATravelAgent (Islam, the anti-Christ)
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To: Senator Bedfellow

17 posted on 12/07/2005 3:03:55 PM PST by BenLurkin (O beautiful for patriot dream - that sees beyond the years)
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To: kaktuskid

18 posted on 12/07/2005 3:06:23 PM PST by BenLurkin (O beautiful for patriot dream - that sees beyond the years)
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To: bahblahbah

Maybe you meant sashimi, sushi means rice in japanese.


19 posted on 12/07/2005 3:09:32 PM PST by eastforker (Under Cover FReeper going dark(too much 24))
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To: bahblahbah

If these jellyfish are poisonous, how can they be eaten?


20 posted on 12/07/2005 3:10:09 PM PST by PJ-Comix (Join the DUmmie FUnnies PING List for the FUNNIEST Blog on the Web)
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To: PJ-Comix

"If these jellyfish are poisonous, how can they be eaten?"



Didn't you see that Simpson's episode? The sushi chef has to slice it up just right. Part of it is extremely poisonous, but the other part is "tasty fish."


21 posted on 12/07/2005 3:26:21 PM PST by AuH2ORepublican (http://auh2orepublican.blogspot.com/)
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To: AuH2ORepublican

It is fugu, a blow fish, that has the deadly nerve toxin in one of the
internal organs (either the liver of gall bladder, I forget which). There
are fugu restaurants in Japan, where the thrill of risking death by eating
even a slightly tainted sliver of meat is the whole point of the experience.

You must be a licensed fugu chef to work at such a restaurant, but there
are a number of "black market" fugu stands around, too.

However, fugu usually kills you within 15 minutes, not 24 hours. It starts
with a tingling in the fingers, and works its way up your arms and legs, until
you are completely paralyzed, and you die when it reaches your heart.


22 posted on 12/07/2005 3:46:31 PM PST by Xenophobic Alien (Kerry lost. Please take that stupid bumper sticker off your car!)
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To: AuH2ORepublican; PJ-Comix
"Poison, poison, poison...tasty fish!"


23 posted on 12/07/2005 4:08:04 PM PST by Senator Bedfellow
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To: BenLurkin

24 posted on 12/07/2005 4:10:13 PM PST by Senator Bedfellow
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To: PJ-Comix
Only the tentacles, which have nematocysts,or stinging cells, are poisonous. A nematocyst cell will fire, even if the jelly fish is dead. It's like a spring loaded booby trap. If you can avoid the nematocysts then maybe the rest of the jelly fish is a delectable treat.
25 posted on 12/07/2005 5:46:43 PM PST by joem15
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