This post is a part of A-Z Challenge for bloggers, that takes place every year in the month of April. Bloggers take part in this challenge for self improvement and to overcome the “writer’s block”. Each one of us writes one article everyday, starting from the alphabet ‘A’, right up to ‘Z’. My theme for this year’s challenge is – mind-blowing facts and theories.
Jellyfish are thought to pre-date dinosaurs by millions of years! Pulsing along ocean currents, these creatures can be found in waters both cold and warm, deep and shallow and along coastlines, too. They also exist in a range of colors like pink, yellow, blue and purple. I’m already impressed with these jelly-like creatures! But, hold your horses…there’s more to be amazed about.
Jellyfish have no brains: Instead, they have nerve nets which sense changes in the environment and coordinate with animal’s responses. They also have no heart, bones or eyes. They have a smooth, bag-like body and tentacles armed with tiny, stinging cells. These incredible invertebrates use their stinging tentacles to scare or paralyze their prey before gobbling it up. Their mouth is in the center of their body from which they both eat and discard waste. Also, by squirting a jet of water from their mouth they propel forward!
Jellyfish can clone themselves: If a jellyfish is cut in two it doesn’t die! Instead, the pieces of the jellyfish regenerate and create two new organisms! Similarly, if a jellyfish is injured, it can clone itself and produce up to hundreds of offspring!
Some jellyfish are immortal: A jellyfish begins it’s life as a larva, called a planula, which develops from a fertilized egg. A planula then grows into a cylindrical colony of polyps, after which they finally reach their last stage of growth by developing into medusas. But, Turritopsis dohrnii or the immortal jellyfish have the ability to travel backward to the polyp stage in case of physical damage or starvation! Hence, restarting their journey of life! Isn’t that cool? I wonder if they never die, could they take over the oceans one day?!!?
Jellyfish have shut down nuclear reactors: Yes! Their bloom has been responsible for shutting down various nuclear reactors that relied on ocean water intakes to run. The jellyfish swarms have clogged the intake pipes, forcing to stop operation temporarily.
They are thought to be the most deadly animal: The box jellyfish is thought to be the most venomous animal in the world. It has a cube shaped body, and tentacles that can reach up to 10 feet far containing toxins that attack the heart, nervous system, and skin cells. It’s poison can send a human into shock and cause drowning or die of heart failure before even reaching shore!
Urinating on a jellyfish sting wouldn’t do anything: Yeah, F.R.I.E.N.D.S fan must be a little disappointed here, but it’s true! In fact, urinating on a jellyfish sting would only cause you more pain. Instead, it is advised to first remove any tentacles carefully with tweezers and soak the sting in hot water. However, in case of a severe reaction, seek medical assistance immediately.
Jellyfish have been to space: Over 2,000 jellyfish polyps were blasted into space in 1991 to study their reaction to lack of gravity. They reproduced in space, creating over 60,000 jellies! However, the space-bred jellies weren’t able to function properly once they returned to Earth.
Some of them are bio-luminescent: Which means they have the ability to produce their own light!
Jellyfish can be used to make salted caramel: A group of Japanese high school students created a salted caramel recipe that uses powdered jellyfish. Maybe this would be helpful in avoiding an invasive jellyfish bloom!