Vikash Sharma

The recovery of thousands of dead jellyfish washing ashore the Puri sea beach had triggered concern among the tourists as well as environmentalists.

Many tourists alleged that they suffered rashes as well as reported complaints of itching after coming in contact with the jellyfish carcasses.

“We are not feeling good as there was itching on the body after taking bath,” said a tourist.

Jellyfish carcasses can be found on the entire stretch of the beach from near Swarga Dwar up to Light House area. Many are demanding a detailed research on the varieties of jellyfish found and their impact on environment following deaths in such large numbers.

The residents are also demanding adequate measures on part of the district administration and forest department to bury the carcasses of jellyfish lying on the beach.

Rajesh Pradhan, Scientist Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute, said that there has been rise in jellyfish swarming and stranding incidents leading to their deaths. This could be due to the recent Cyclone Mocha, rise in temperature and high tide.

“These are mainly crown jellyfishes and they are temperature sensitive for which there has been mass swarming. This was due to high tide and cyclone Mocha,” said Pradhan.

According to Pradhan, the locomotory organs of jellyfish are weak and they often get stranded on beaches.

“These species of jellyfish are not fatal and whenever any person complains of itching, they can wash the area with vinegar,” said Pradhan adding that it is a natural phenomenon and we are conducting a research on it.

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