Why Record Jellyfish Sightings?

This is a web site to monitor and record coastal ocean health. It is a citizen-science nexus for people to report their observations of jellyfish blooms, harmful algal blooms, and unusual occurrences of squid, marine mammals, or even marine debris.

There are increasing reports of jellyfish blooms and other ocean perturbations in the news, but there are scant data to support conclusions about the potential for global change. As marine biologists, we are all trying to improve our knowledge of abundance and outbreaks. However, for a group of scientists to set out to measure abundances over time requires a large investment to cover even a small area of the ocean.

On this site, users from around the globe can simply click on a map to report blooms or other unusual occurrences in their local waters. Regular beach-walkers can log in to contribute their own local "time-series", including periods when conditions appear "normal" without any blooms. The database is freely available to the public and other scientists to download for their own studies.

Thus for a small investment, we can empower millions of potential observers generating reports.

We intend for the database to be a useful resource for groups in other countries to support their own local monitoring projects.