- Title: Giant jellyfish swarms fill seas around Crimea, pushing tourists away
- Date: 24th August 2021
- Summary: NEAR SHCOLKINE, CRIMEA (AUGUST 23, 2021) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF DRONE FOOTAGE OF JELLYFISH SWARM (MUTE) JELLYFISH FLOATING IN SEA VARIOUS OF JELLYFISH NEAR SHORE VARIOUS OF TOURIST WALKING IN SEA AMONG JELLYFISH VARIOUS OF DEAD JELLYFISH NEAR SHORE (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) TOURIST, NINA TRAPEZNIKOVA, SAYING: "We came here to swim, but the jellyfish are here. We will search for a new place to swim and relax." DRONE FOOTAGE OF JELLYFISH SEVASTOPOL, CRIMEA (AUGUST 23, 2021) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF SEVASTOPOL HARBOR SEVASTOPOL, CRIMEA (AUGUST 24, 2021) (REUTERS) (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) HEAD OF DEPARTMENT OF MARINE SANITARY HYDROBIOLOGY AT RUSSIAN INSTITUTE OF SOUTH SEA BIOLOGY, SERGEI ALYOMOV, SAYING: "The global warming causes certain changes in the overall balance of water in the whole watershed of all seas and oceans, the Azov Sea included. But here, we should not only pay attention to the warming issue but also the rainfall numbers in the watershed." NEAR SHCOLKINE, CRIMEA (AUGUST 23, 2021) (REUTERS) (MUTE) DRONE FOOTAGE OF JELLYFISH NEAR SHORE SEVASTOPOL, CRIMEA (AUGUST 24, 2021) (REUTERS) (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) HEAD OF DEPARTMENT OF MARINE SANITARY HYDROBIOLOGY AT RUSSIAN INSTITUTE OF SOUTH SEA BIOLOGY, SERGEI ALYOMOV, SAYING: "The salinity level of the Azov Sea is determined by major factors such as the river flow balance and the amount of water coming from the Black Sea. In recent dry years, the flow of the main rivers the Kuban and the Don have decreased. Accordingly, salinity levels have increased." ALYOMOV SPEAKING (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) HEAD OF DEPARTMENT OF MARINE SANITARY HYDROBIOLOGY AT RUSSIAN INSTITUTE OF SOUTH SEA BIOLOGY, SERGEI ALYOMOV, SAYING: "Jellyfish have long been present in the Azov Sea, but not in the amounts we see now. This significant increase in the jellyfish numbers and biomass is linked to the increased sea salinity and availability of jellyfish-friendly food." NEAR SHCOLKINE, CRIMEA (AUGUST 23, 2021) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF TOURIST WALKING IN SEA TOURIST TAKING SELFIE / EMPTY BEACH JELLYFISH IN WATER (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) TOURIST FROM MOSCOW, ALYONA PLYAS, SAYING: "It's difficult (to swim). You can, if you want it badly, but then you will have to put the jellyfish aside, feeling their sticky, unpleasant touch, a jelly-like, cold, disgusting touch. Moreover, they sting. But you've got to hand it to them - they don't do it intentionally. It's just that when you push them with your hands, they release liquid which stings, leaving marks on hands." DRONE VIEW OF JELLYFISH NEAR SEASHORE (MUTE)
- Embargoed: 7th September 2021 14:48
- Keywords: beach ecology global warming jallyfish sea tourism
- Location: NEAR SHCOLKINE AND SEVASTOPOL, CRIMEA
- City: NEAR SHCOLKINE AND SEVASTOPOL, CRIMEA
- Country: Ukraine
- Topics: Environment,Europe,Temperature,Editors' Choice
- Reuters ID: LVA001ERN3HVD
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Residents of Crimea and tourists coming to the peninsula for their holidays are now having to compete with swarms of jellyfish for a spot under the sun.
Thousands of jellyfish washed up on the shore of a popular beach near Shcolkine village, prompting those who want to enjoy the warm Azov Sea to go elsewhere.
"We will search for a new place to swim and relax," said one of the tourists, Nina Trapeznikova.
The rise in the jellyfish population is caused by warm and dry weather that has been stable in the region over the recent years, Russian Institute of South Sea Biology researcher Sergei Alyomov told Reuters on Tuesday (August 24).
The dry weather reduces the amount of fresh water flowing from the rivers to the sea, eventually making the seawater saltier, creating an ideal environment for jellyfish.
With lots of food to consume in the Azov Sea, jellyfish can quickly increase their population, Alyomov said.
The jellyfish population is likely to remain high as long as the water is salty enough, he added.
Two species of jellyfish live in the seas near Crimea but neither of them is life-threatening for humans, according to data by the Institute of South Sea Biology.
Although some tourists were still keen to get a swim among the jellyfish, the Shcolkine beach was largely empty on Monday.
Alyona Plyas, who arrived in Crimea on holiday from Moscow, said it was difficult to swim in the sea as she had to feel the jellyfish and their "cold, disgusting touch".
Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014.
(Production: Dmitry Turlyun)
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