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Images: Mysterious Jellyfish Makes a Comeback

Conducting research in Farm Pond on Martha's Vineyard in August 2013, WHOI scientist Mary Carman was stung by a clinging jellyfish. She investigated further and found more reports of clinging jellyfish stings in the area. (Dann Blackwood, U.S. Geologoical Survey, Woods Hole)

Clinging jellyfish are about the size of a penny, but they expand to about 3 inches in diameter. They have pads on their tentacles (rare for a sea jelly) that allow them to cling to eelgrass (at top) and other shallow-water flora. They eat tiny zooplankton called copepods, which flourish from spring to fall. (Dann Blackwood, U.S. Geologoical Survey, Woods Hole)

WHOI scientist Mary Carman (right) has been studying tunicates, called sea squirts, which invaded New England waters and made areas uninhabitable for native species of oysters, mussels, scallops, eelgrass, and other marine life. At left is Jason Mallory, deputy shellfish constable for the Oak Bluffs Shellfish Department on Martha's Vineyard. (Dann Blackwood, U.S. Geologoical Survey, Woods Hole)