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Sea squirts

Jelly Problem

WHOI scientist Mary Carman fielded questions from journalists participating in the annual WHOI Ocean Science Journalism Fellowship about little sea squirts causing big problems in New England. Six species of invasive squirts found on the East coast won't harm people, but scientists like Carman worry about effects on marine life. Evidence shows that these sea squirts smother scallops and mussels, push out native species of sea squirts, and coat the seafloor, possibly making areas uninhabitable to fish eggs and shellfish larvae. Carman's sea squirt work has recently lead to the study of other invasive organisms, including clinging jellyfish. (Photo by Tom Kleindinst, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)


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