Service Communautaire d'Information sur la Recherche et le Développement - CORDIS

Method for cultivating Scyphozoans

The cultivation of adult jellyfish in aquaria is very difficult. Most species sampled from the sea do not survive net-capture or transportation to the aquarium. Others die after a few days of culturing. Some famous aquaria (e.g. Monterey Bay and Zooaqurium Berlin) are able to cultivate large scyphozoan medusae. After many years of research, these institutions have designed special aquaria with a particular current strong enough to support the buoyancy of medusae but not so strong as to cause damage to the gelatinous animals.

Nevertheless, there is a way for hobby-researchers, teachers or students to follow the life cycle of jellyfish with comparatively simple methods. In most scyphozoan species, the larval stages do not develop to young medusae directly. Instead they develop to a totally different generation of animals, the polyp-generation. The rearing of young polyps is possible for everybody, as they do not grow more than a few millimetres in size and can be cultivated in glass bowls with approximately 200ml of natural or artificial seawater. With a little luck, the production of young medusae and their development can also be followed. The easiest species to rear is the globally distributed moon jellyfish, Aurelia aurita. The rearing instruction for this species is summarized.

Reported by

University of Hamburg
Martin-Luther-King Pl. 3
20146 Hamburg
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