Monday, January 13, 2014

#5 Freshwater jellies

Freshwater jellyfish. Wiki commons

My Favorite Nature Moments of 2013.

This is a classic fish story, the one that got away story, although in this case the fish is a jellyfish, a small ephemeral beastie.

Eliot hunting jellies
Freshwater jellyfishCraspedacusta sowerbii, the medusa adult stage, appear ever so often in Mead's Quarry Lake at Ijams. In 2011, we located jellies several times and since they have a two-year lifecycle, I expected to find them again this past summer. They generally appear near the surface of the water during the heat of late summer: August through October.

We made several canoe trips during this timeframe last summer, searching methodically, but our buckets came up empty.

Jar of jelly
That is not to say, our summer was jellyless. 

Ijams member, Brian Bonnyman, located and was able to catch five in a lake in Blount County while kayaking. 

Brian gave them to me and for a week the little ghosts lived in a jar on the front desk at Ijams for all to see, until eventually they became real ghosts. (I'm still working on my jellyfish husbandry.)

Yet, suffice it to say, thanks to Brian, for a brief time I did hold lightning in a bottle.

Go here for photos and video: Brian's jellies. 

Brian Bonnyman

1 comment:

Dorothy said...

I didn't know there was such a thing as a freshwater jellyfish!! Interesting!