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In One Ear: Lobster lunch

Jellyfish found to be unexpected food source
By Elleda Wilson

The Daily Astorian

Published on January 12, 2018 12:01AM


It turns out that the lowly jellyfish, often considered a nuisance, appears to be a delectable snack for the 10-inch Norway lobster (aka langoustine), a highly desirable crustacean in European markets (tinyurl.com/jellyfood).

A team of scientists from Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, led by Andrew Sweetman, experimented by putting jellyfish carcasses in a cage at the bottom of a fjord to see what would happen. Norwegian lobsters found and devoured the treats quickly, scaring off other scavengers, to boot. Of note: One jellyfish can fuel a lobster’s energy for two to three months. Pictured, courtesy of Heriot-Watt, a hungry lobster snacking.

“Jellyfish have historically been considered a ‘dead end’ in the marine food chain, and it was only in 2012 that we discovered that anything was using it as a food source,” Sweetman said. “To discover that it’s a potentially huge food source for one of the Atlantic and North Sea’s most commercially important catches is really interesting, and raises questions about how jellyfish could contribute to sustainable commercial fishing.”



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