Skip to main content
×
×
Home

Distribution, extent of inter-annual variability and diet of the bloom-forming jellyfish Rhizostoma in European waters

  • M.K.S. Lilley (a1), J.D.R. Houghton (a1) and G.C. Hays (a1)
Abstract

Jellyfish (Cnidaria: Scyphozoa) are increasingly thought to play a number of important ecosystem roles, but often fundamental knowledge of their distribution, seasonality and inter-annual variability is lacking. Bloom forming species, due to their high densities, can have particularly intense trophic and socio-economic impacts. In northern Europe it is known that one particularly large (up to 30 kg wet weight) bloom forming jellyfish is Rhizostoma spp. Given the potential importance, we set out to review all known records from peer-reviewed and broader public literature of the jellyfish R. octopus (Linnaeus) and R. pulmo (Macri) (Scyphozoa: Rhizostomae) across western Europe. These data revealed distinct hotspots where regular Rhizostoma spp. aggregations appeared to form, with other sites characterized by occasional abundances and a widespread distribution of infrequent observations. Surveys of known R. octopus hotspots around the Irish Sea also revealed marked inter-annual variation with particularly high abundances forming during 2003. The location of such consistent aggregations and inter-annual variances are discussed in relation to physical, climatic and dietary variations.

Copyright
Corresponding author
Correspondence should be addressed to: M.K.S. Lilley, Institute of Environmental Sustainability, Swansea University, Singleton Park, Swansea, SA2 8PP, UK email: 385124@swansea.ac.uk
References
Hide All
Alpine, A.E. and Cloern, J.E. (1985) Differences in in vivo fluorescence yield between three phytoplankton size-classes. Journal of Plankton Research 7, 381390.
Axelsson, M., Dewey, S., Tourell, A. and Karpouzli, E. (2006) Site condition monitoring—the sublittoral sandbanks of the Solway Firth. Scottish Natural Heritage Commissioned Report, No. 155 (ROAME No. F02AA409), pp. 111.
Barz, K. and Hirche, H.J. (2005) Seasonal development of scyphozoan medusae and the predatory impact of Aurelia aurita on the zooplankton community in the Bornholm Basin (central Baltic Sea). Marine Biology 147, 465476.
Battisti, A., Stastny, M., Buffo, E. and Larsson, S. (2006) A rapid altitudinal range expansion in the pine processionary moth produced by the 2003 climatic anomaly. Global Change Biology 12, 662671.
Beniston, M. (2004) The 2003 heat wave in Europe: a shape of things to come? An analysis based on Swiss climatological data and model simulations. Geophysical Research Letters 31. XXXX. article number L02202, doi:10.1029/2003GL018857, (no page numbers associated with the article in the journal itself).
Boyd, R.J., O'Ceidigh, P. and Wilkinson, A. (1973) Investigations of the plankton of the west coast of Ireland—VI. Pelagic Cnidaria of the Galway Bay area 1956–72, with revision of previous records for these species in Irish inshore waters. Proceedings of the Royal Irish Academy 73B, 383403.
Brewer, R.H. (1989) The annual pattern of feeding, growth, and sexual reproduction in Cyanea (Cnidaria: Scyphozoa) in the Niantic River Estuary, Connecticut. Biological Bulletin. Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole 176, 272281.
Brodeur, R.D., Sugisaki, H. and Hunt, G.L. (2002) Increases in jellyfish biomass in the Bering Sea: implications for the ecosystem. Marine Ecology Progress Series 233, 89103.
Browne, E.T. (1895) Report on the medusae of the LMBC District (Isle of Man). Transactions of the Liverpool Biological Society 9, 243286.
Browne, E.T. (1905) A report on the medusae found in the Firth of Clyde (1901–2). Proceedings of the Royal Society of Edinburgh 25, 736–78.
Capriulo, G.M. and Carpenter, E.J. (1983) Abundance, species composition and feeding impact of tintinnid micro-zooplankton in central Long Island Sound. Marine Ecology Progress Series 10, 277288.
Ciais, P., Reichstein, M., Viovy, N., Granier, A., Ogee, J., Allard, V., Aubinet, M., Buchmann, N., Bernhofer, C. and Carrara, A. (2005) Europe-wide reduction in primary productivity caused by the heat and drought in 2003. Nature 437, 529533.
Crothers, J.H.(ed.) (1966) Dale Fort marine fauna, 2nd edition. London: Field Studies Council.
Doyle, T.K., Houghton, J.D.R., Buckley, S.M., Hays, G.C. and Davenport, J. (2007) The distribution of five scyphozoan jellyfish species across a temperate coastal environment. Hydrobiologia 579, 2939.
Duron, M. (1978) Contribution à l'étude de la biologie de Dermochelys coriacea (Linné) dans les Pertuis Charentais. Bordeaux: Université de Bordeaux.
Fancett, M.S. (1988) Diet and prey selectivity of scyphomedusae from Port Phillip Bay, Australia. Marine Biology 98, 503.
Gilabert, J. (2001) Seasonal plankton dynamics in a Mediterranean hypersaline coastal lagoon: the Mar Menor. Journal of Plankton Research 23, 207218.
Gore, R.H. (1968) The larval development of the commensal crab Polyonyx gibbesi Haig, 1956 (Crustacea: Decapoda). Biological Bulletin. Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole 135, 111129.
Graham, W.M. and Kroutil, R.M. (2001) Size-based prey selectivity and dietary shifts in the jellyfish, Aurelia aurita. Journal of Plankton Research 23, 6774.
Graham, W.M., Martin, D.L., Felder, D.L., Asper, V.L. and Perry, H.M. (2003) Ecological and economic implications of a tropical jellyfish invader in the Gulf of Mexico. Biological Invasions 5, 5369.
Hamner, W.M., Gilmer, R.W. and Hamner, P.P. (1982) The physical, chemical, and biological characteristics of a stratified, saline, sulfide lake in Palau. Limnology and Oceanography 27, 896909.
Hay, S. (2006) Marine ecology: gelatinous bells may ring change in marine ecosystems. Current Biology 16, R679R682.
Hay, S.J., Hislop, J.R.G. and Shanks, A.M. (1990) North Sea Scyphomedusae—summer distribution, estimated biomass and significance particularly for O-group gadoid fish. Netherlands Journal of Sea Research 25, 113130.
Hays, G.C., Richardson, A.J. and Robinson, C. (2005) Climate change and marine plankton. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 20, 337.
Holst, S. and Jarms, G. (2006) Substrate choice and settlement preferences of plannula larvae of five Scyphozoa (Cnidaria) from German Bight, North Sea. Marine Biology 151, 863871.
Holst, S., Sötje, I., Tiemann, H. and Jarms, G. (2007) Life cycle of the rhizostome jellyfish Rhizostoma octopus (L.) (Scyphozoa, Rhizostomeae), with studies on cnidocysts and statoliths. Marine Biology 151, 16951710.
Houghton, J.D.R., Doyle, T.K., Davenport, J. and Hays, G.C. (2006a) Developing a simple, rapid method for identifying and monitoring jellyfish aggregations from the air. Marine Ecology Progress Series 314, 159170.
Houghton, J.D.R., Doyle, T.K., Wilson, M.W., Davenport, J. and Hays, G.C. (2006b) Jellyfish aggregations and leatherback turtle foraging patterns in a temperate coastal environment. Ecology 87, 19671972.
Houghton, J.D.R., Doyle, T.K., Lilley, M.K.S., Wilson, R.P., Davenport, J. and Hays, G.C. (2007) Stranding events provide indirect insights into seasonality and persistence of jellyfish (Cnidaria: Scyphozoa) medusae. Hydrobiologia 589, 113.
Ishii, H. and Tanaka, F. (2001) Food and feeding of Aurelia aurita in Tokyo Bay with an analysis of stomach contents and a measurement of digestion times. Hydrobiologia 451, 311320.
Jiguet, F., Julliard, R., Thomas, C.D., Dehorter, O., Newson, S.E. and Couvet, D. (2006) Thermal range predicts bird population resilience to extreme high temperatures. Ecology Letters 9, 13211330.
Kingsford, M.J., Pitt, K.A. and Gillanders, B.M. (2000) Management of jellyfish fisheries, with special reference to the Order Rhizostomeae. Oceanography and Marine Biology 38, 85156.
Kramp, P.L. (1934) An exceptional occurrence of Rhizostoma octopus and Chrysaora hysoscella in the Danish waters in 1933. Journal du Conseil 9, 211221.
Lid, G. (1979) The occurrence of jellyfish (Scyphozoa) along the Norwegian coast. Fauna (Blindern) 32, 129136.
Lucas, C.H., Hirst, A.G. and Williams, J.A. (1997) Plankton dynamics and Aurelia aurita production in two contrasting ecosystems: comparisons and consequences. Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science 45, 209219.
Luterbacher, J., Dietrich, D., Xoplaki, E., Grosjean, M. and Wanner, H. (2004) European seasonal and annual temperature variability, trends, and extremes since 1500. Science 303, 14991503.
Lynam, C.P., Hay, S.J. and Brierley, A.S. (2004) Interannual variability in abundance of North Sea jellyfish and links to the North Atlantic Oscillation. Limnology and Oceanography 49, 637643.
Lynam, C.P., Hay, S.J. and Brierley, A.S. (2005) Jellyfish abundance and climatic variation: contrasting responses in oceanographically distinct regions of the North Sea, and possible implications for fisheries. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom 85, 435450.
Lynam, C.P., Gibbons, M.J., Axelsen, B.E., Sparks, C.A.J., Coetzee, J., Heywood, B.G. and Brierley, A.S. (2006) Jellyfish overtake fish in a heavily fished ecosystem. Current Biology 16, 492493.
MarBEF, (2004) European Register of Marine Species. Available online at http://www.marbef.org/data/erms.php. [Accessed 5 December 2007.]
Mas, J. (1999) Estudio de la dinamica de poblaciones de las medusas Cotylorhiza tuberculata, Rhizostoma pulmo y Aurelia aurita en el mar Menor y de su problematica asociada. Instituto Espanol de Oceanografia, internal report, pp. 101.
McMillan, N. (1999) Actinians (sea-anemones) beached in large numbers on the south Lancashire coast. Naturalist 124, 5556.
Mills, C.E. (2001) Jellyfish blooms: are populations increasing globally in response to changing ocean conditions? Hydrobiologia 451, 5568
Moline, M.A., Claustre, H., Frazer, T.K., Schofield, O. and Vernet, M. (2004) Alteration of the food web along the Antarctic Peninsula in response to a regional warming trend. Global Change Biology 10, 19731980.
Morand, P. and Dallot, S. (1985) Variations annuelles et pluriannuelles de quelques especes du macroplancton cotier de la mer Ligure (1898–1914). Rapports et Proces-Verbaux des Réunions. Commission Internationale Pour l'Exploration Scientifique de la Mer Méditerranée 29, 285287.
Mouthon, J. and Daufresne, M. (2006) Effects of the 2003 heatwave and climatic warming on mollusc communities of the Saone: a large lowland river and of its two main tributaries (France). Global Change Biology 12, 441.
Munk, P. and Kiorboe, T. (1985) Feeding behaviour and swimming activity of larval herring (Clupea harengus) in relation to density of copepod nauplii. Marine Ecology Progress Series 24, 1521.
Newell, G.E. (1954) The marine fauna of Whitstable. Annals and Magazine of Natural History 7, 321350.
Nicholas, K.R. and Frid, C.L.J. (1999) Occurrence of hydromedusae in the plankton off Northumberland (western central North Sea) and the role of planktonic predators. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom 79, 979992.
O'Connor, B. and McGrath, D. (1978) On the occurrence of the scyphozoan Rhizostoma octopus (L.) around the Irish coast in 1976. Irish Naturalists Journal 19, 261263.
Pauly, D. and Pullin, R.S.V. (1988) Hatching time in spherical, pelagic, marine fish eggs in response to temperature and egg size. Environmental Biology of Fishes 22, 261271.
Perez-Ruzafa, A. (1997) ‘Estudio de la dinámica de las poblaciones de medusas en el Mar Menor, problemática asociada y búsqueda de soluciones’ Final report of the Investigation Ecologia y Ordenacion de Ecosistemas Marinos Costeros Group. Department of Ecology and Hydrology, University of Murcia, Spain, pp. 234. [Author: Perez-Ruzafa 1997 - 234 pages].
Perez-Ruzafa, A., Gilabert, J., Gutierrez, J.M., Fernández, A.I., Marcos, C. and Sabah, S. (2002) Evidence of a planktonic food web response to changes in nutrient input dynamics in the Mar Menor coastal lagoon, Spain. Hydrobiologia 475, 359369.
Pérez-Ruzafa, A., Fernández, A.I., Marcos, C., Quispe, J.I. and García-Charton, J.A. (2005) Spatial and temporal variations of hydrological conditions, nutrients and chlorophyll a in a Mediterranean coastal lagoon (Mar Menor, Spain). Hydrobiologia 550, 1127.
Purcell, J.E. (1992) Effects of predation by the scyphomedusan Chrysaora quinquecirrha on zooplankton populations in Chesapeake Bay, USA. Marine Ecology Progress Series 87, 6576.
Purcell, J.E. (2003) Predation on zooplankton by large jellyfish, Aurelia labiata, Cyanea capillata and Aequorea aequorea, in Prince William Sound, Alaska. Marine Ecology Progress Series 246, 137152.
Purcell, J.E. (2005) Climate effects on formation of jellyfish and ctenophore blooms: a review. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom 85, 461476.
Purcell, J.E., Cresswell, F.P., Cargo, D.G. and Kennedy, V.S. (1991) Differential ingestion and digestion of bivalve larvae by the scyphozoan Chrysaora quinquecirrha and the ctenophore Mnemiopsis leidyi. Biological Bulletin. Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole 180, 103111.
Purcell, J.E., Brown, E.D., Stokesbury, K.D.E., Haldorson, L.H. and Shirley, T.C. (2000) Aggregations of the jellyfish Aurelia labiata: abundance, distribution, association with age-0 walleye pollock, and behaviours promoting aggregation in Prince William Sound, Alaska, USA. Marine Ecology Progress Series 195, 145158.
Russell, F.S. (1970) The Medusae of the British Isles. Volume II—Pelagic Scyphozoa. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Schär, C. and Jendritzky, G. (2004) Climate change: hot news from summer 2003. Nature 432, 559560.
Stemberger, R.S. and Gilbert, J.J. (1985) Body size, food concentration, and population growth in planktonic rotifers. Ecology 66, 11511159.
Sullivan, B.K., Garcia, J.R. and Klein-MacPhee, G. (1994) Prey selection by the scyphomedusan predator Aurelia aurita. Marine Biology 121, 335341.
Sun, B. and Fleeger, J.W. (1995) Sustained mass culture of Amphiascoides atopus a marine harpacticoid copepod in a recirculating system. Aquaculture 136, 313321.
Uye, S.-I. and Ichino, S. (1995) Seasonal variations in abundance, size composition, biomass and production rate of Oikopleura dioica (Fol) (Tunicata: Appendicularia) in a temperate eutrophic inlet. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology 189, 111.
Valletin, R. (1907) The fauna of St Ives Bay. Journal of the Royal Institution of Cornwall LIII, 29.
Verwey, J. (1967) Annual report of the Netherlands Institute for Sea Research for the year 1964. Netherlands Journal of Sea Research 3, 464487.
Williams, G. (1954) The fauna of Strangford Lough and neighbouring coasts. Proceedings of the Royal Irish Academy 56, 29133.
Zaret, T.M. and Kerfoot, W.C. (1975) Fish predation on Bosmina longirostris: body-size selection versus visibility selection. Ecology 56, 232237.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom
  • ISSN: 0025-3154
  • EISSN: 1469-7769
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-the-marine-biological-association-of-the-united-kingdom
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Keywords

Metrics

Altmetric attention score