Aquarist Josh Wagner to Describe the Mysteries of Sea Jellies at Long Beach Sierra Club

share this:
Indonesian Sea Nettle - Photo credit: Courtesy of the Aquarium of the Pacific

Indonesian Sea Nettle – Photo credit: Courtesy of the Aquarium of the Pacific

As diaphanous as a ghost, sea jellies have undulated through the world’s oceans for half-a-billion years. They can be as small as a grain of salt or as large as an NBA forward trailing tentacles that can grow to 80 or 90 feet.

Along the local coastline, especially in the protected waters of Huntington Harbour and Alamitos Bay, it’s not uncommon in summer to find large groups of moon jellies, which also happen to be among the more popular exhibits at the Aquarium of the Pacific.

Raising jellies, though, is no simple feat. These mysterious creatures have neither brain, heart nor a digestive system we would recognize, yet when they reproduce they fire off gametes that, like the jelly itself, drift in the water until fertilized. Under the right conditions, these fertilized polyps churn out dozens of baby jelly clones.

Aquarist Josh Wagner, who runs the sea jelly nursery at the Aquarium of the Pacific, will speak at the February 3rd meeting of the Long Beach Sierra Club. Illustrated with pictures, Wagner will explain how he coaxes the jellies to reproduce, raising them until they go on exhibit or are sent off to other aquariums.

The meeting begins at 7:30 p.m. at the Environmental Services Bureau, 2929 E Willow St, Long Beach. It is free, and open to the public.

The Long Beach Group is part of the Angeles Chapter of the Sierra Club. The group has more than 2,500 members and serves Cerritos, Hawaiian Gardens, Lakewood, Long Beach, Los Alamitos, Signal Hill and Seal Beach.

Comments are closed.