Animal Update: August 23

animal update

New Australian white-spotted jellies are on exhibit! 

Named for the white spots distributed evenly across their bell, this larger species of jellyfish can grow to be approximately 20 inches wide!

national aquarium white spotted jellies

Photo via Flickr user KtSeery.

Like most jellies, the tips of their transparent appendages are filled with of stinging cells (considered only “mildy venomous,” these jellies don’t pose a threat to humans who come in contact with them).

As its common name suggests, the natural range of this species includes Australia and most of the Indo-Pacific. However, in more recent years, commercial fishers have found large numbers of this species in the Gulf of Mexico. Biologists are concerned that, as an invasive species, these jellies may the native marine species in that area.

Be sure to check back every Friday to find out what’s happening!

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