July 29, 2009--
Eat your heart out, Godzilla. A massive menace from the sea seems poised to invade Japan
anew this summer, experts predict.
In 2005 Japanese waters were inundated with swarms of Nomura's jellyfish--like the pair seen above cruising off the coast of Fukui Prefecture in November 2007. The giants clogged fishing nets and poisoned potential catches with their toxic stings, costing coastal fishers billions of yen.
Scientists have since been racing to unlock the mysteries of this giant jellyfish species in an attempt to forecast invasions and prevent damages.
This June researchers at Hiroshima University made some of the first surveys of the jellyfish's spawning grounds off the Chinese coast. The team found a huge new brood lurking in the waters, prompting experts to warn that another giant jellyfish invasion may be on the horizon.
Photograph from Kyodo via AP