Dead jellyfish wash ashore at Puri coast; govt. seeks Centre’s help

Updated - May 04, 2016 09:25 am IST

Published - May 04, 2016 12:00 am IST - BHUBANESWAR:

“Rare to find so many carcasses of jellyfish”

“Rare to find so many carcasses of jellyfish”

Worried over marine species found dead in large numbers along the Odisha coast, the State government on Tuesday said it would draw the attention of the Centre to find out reasons behind the deaths.

For past one week, bodies of jellyfish have been washing ashore along the Konark-Astaranga coast in Odisha’s Puri district. This has come close on the heels of discovery of three whale carcasses during the past few months. The carcasses of jellyfishes are yet to be examined.

“We do not have expertise in finding the exact reasons behind the deaths. The latest incident is really a cause for concern. We will draw the attention of central research organisations dealing with the subject,” said Sidhant Das, Chief Wildlife Warden of Odisha, here on Tuesday.

Mr. Das said: “When the dead whales were found along the coast a few months ago, we had offered logistic help to the Centre for conducting studies.”

Forest and environment department had faced difficulties in identifying the fin whale that was found dead along the Kendrapara coast as it is not generally found in the Bay of Bengal.

“Jellyfishes keep floating in sea water. It is rare to find carcasses of large number of jellyfishes along the coast. In the past, we have never seen such high number of deaths. There might be some pollution in deep sea which has resulted in the deaths,” said renowned zoologist Sushil Dutta said.

“Although the phenomenon needs to be studied in detail, I doubt climate change triggered such deaths. If rise in temperature or change in marine ecology due to climate change is the reason, it would have impacted all marine species, not one or two,” said Dr. Dutta.

Locals have been advised not to touch the dead jellyfishes.

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