Have You Seen a Jellyfish Lately?

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Marine biologists need your help. The next time you go to the beach, keep a lookout for the creatures that have washed up onto the sand. And if you find a jellyfish, squid or other kind of unusual marine life, including a red tide bloom, please, please report your sighting to Jellywatch.

Jellywatch is the creation of the aptly-named marine biologist Steve Haddock, from the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute. The web site harnesses social networking to create a database of sightings of marine life so scientists can track what is happening in our oceans around the world.

Visitors to Jellywatch can upload information about their sightings, including images, and keep track of what they've previously found. They can also compare their sightings with those of other beachcombers from around the world. Already the database has information about a recent red tide off Cornwall, England; pygmy killer whales seen near Hawaii and Humboldt squid near Vancouver Island.

What strange things will you find this summer?

(Hat tip: Helen Fields)

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