Beachgoers asked to share jellyfish and turtle sightings as both species return to UK shores

As the water temperature warms up, UK citizens have been asked to record sightings of jellyfish – and the turtles that feed on them – as part of the Marine Conservation Society's ongoing research

Published: May 30th, 2022 at 2:30 pm
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Beachgoers are being asked by the Marine Conservation Society to share their sightings of jellyfish and turtles as the temperatures heat up and both species head to our shores.

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Jellyfish tend to arrive in the UK's waters in spring and summer when the temperature begins to rise. A food chain quickly develops, with turtles feeding on jellyfish, which in turn helps control populations.

The presence of jellyfish in the UK's seas is particularly beneficial for those hoping to catch a glimpse of one of the world's seven marine turtle species, six of which have previously been spotted in our oceans. Meanwhile, there are eight species jellyfish, or jellyfish-like species, which you might see in the UK.

The leatherback turtle – the biggest of all the sea turtles – is the most common sighting in UK waters and currently has a 'vulnerable' conservation status.

The charity has been logging reports of jellyfish and turtle sightings in the UK since 2003.

To report a sighting of a jellyfish or turtle, visit the Marine Conservation Society website.


Jellyfish species to look out for in the UK

Compass jellyfish (36% of reported sightings)

Credit: Peter Bardsley

Moon jellyfish (17% of reported sightings)

Credit: Mark Kirkland

Lion's mane jellyfish (15% of reported sightings)

Credit: Kirsty Andrews

Barrel jellyfish (14% of reported sightings)

Credit: Peter Bardsley

Portuguese Man o' War (6% of reported sightings)

Credit: Joanna Clegg

Mauve stinger (2% of reported sightings)

Credit: Peter Bardsley
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By the wind sailor (1% of reported sightings)

Credit: Jonathan Smith

Authors

Freya ParrDigital Editor and Staff Writer, BBC Music Magazine

Freya Parr is BBC Music Magazine's Digital Editor and Staff Writer. She has also written for titles including the Guardian, Circus Journal, Frankie and Suitcase Magazine, and runs The Noiseletter, a fortnightly arts and culture publication. Freya's main areas of interest and research lie in 20th-century and contemporary music.

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