Day of the Jellyfish at Grayton Beach
September 18, 2013 by Edmond Alexander
While fishing off of the beach Grayton Beach, Florida I encountered thousands, if not tens of thousands, of Moon Jellyfish (Aurelia aurita) in what had to be a a jellyfish jubilee. This movie, as my other underwater movies, was recorded with a GoPro camera attached to a home made PVC drop stick weighted with BBs and attached to a heavy rod and reel. A small fin was also attached to the PVC tube to stabilize the sway motion as the camera was pulled through the water. There is no control over shot selection except for the current and the direction of the boat as it moved through the water.
While the constant motion of the boat in this movie resulted in some shaky scenes, it did work to show the large numbers of jellies and reveal some of the exceptional beauty of their delicate structure. It was something that I had never seen before.
Aurelia aurita (also called the moon jelly, moon jellyfish, common jellyfish, or saucer jelly) is a widely studied species of the genus Aurelia. The jellyfish is translucent, usually about 25–40 cm in diameter. It feeds by collecting medusae, plankton, and mollusks with its tentacles, and bringing them into its body for digestion. It is capable of only limited motion, and drifts with the current, even when swimming.