Jellyfish

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Non-poisonous jellyfish, such as Moon jellyfish and Blue Blubber jellyfish, are widely available and appropriate as pets for children. Pet jellyfish for kids require a special aquarium and fish-specific diets.

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  • How are jellyfish scientifically classified?

    Q: How are jellyfish scientifically classified?

    A: Jellyfish are animals of the phylum Cnidaria, class Scyphozoa, order Semaeostomeae and family Cyaneidae. The phylum Cnidaria is an incredibly ancient group of invertebrate animals, stretching back hundreds of millions of years. Jellyfish are among the oldest types of multicellular animals. True jellyfish have a number of distinguishing characteristics by which they are classified.
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  • Are jellyfish carnivores, herbivores or omnivores?

    Q: Are jellyfish carnivores, herbivores or omnivores?

    A: Jellyfish are carnivores and excellent predators. They sting with tentacles to subdue small aquatic fish, and eat the eggs and invertebrates that stick to their tentacles.
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  • What is a red jellyfish?

    Q: What is a red jellyfish?

    A: The red jellyfish, Tiburonia granrojo, is a large, predatory species of jellyfish living deep in the Pacific Ocean. Dark red in color, it grows to 2 to 3 feet in diameter and has a fleshy appearance.
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  • How does a jellyfish move?

    Q: How does a jellyfish move?

    A: Jellyfish move by floating with the ocean's currents, jet propulsion or by using cilia. Jellyfish typically move deep in the water, though some move in shallow water. Man-o'-wars float on top of the water.
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  • What are the body parts of a jellyfish?

    Q: What are the body parts of a jellyfish?

    A: A jellyfish's body is made up mainly of water, along with a jelly-like substance called mesoglea, tentacles, a mouth and a thin layer of skin. Its body is around 90 percent water and its skin is only one cell thick.
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  • What do moon jellyfish eat?

    Q: What do moon jellyfish eat?

    A: Moon jellyfish primarily eat planktonic crustaceans, but they also eat other small plankton including molluscs, fish eggs and smaller jellyfish. They catch their food with sticky mucus that lines the underside of their bells and then direct it into their four stomach pouches with their tentacles.
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  • What are jellyfish made of?

    Q: What are jellyfish made of?

    A: Jellyfish are made of 95 percent water and 5 percent solid matter. The solid matter is composed of three layers: the epidermis is the outer layer, the mesoglea or the jelly is the middle layer and the gastrodermis is the inner layer.
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  • What is the jellyfish's habitat?

    Q: What is the jellyfish's habitat?

    A: Jellyfish are found in all of the Earth's oceans, including the very deep sea, as well as shallow saltwater lakes. Various jellyfish species have a wide range of living preferences, with some preferring arctic waters, and others preferring warmer tropical waters. There are animals called hydrozoans that are closely related to jellyfish and live in freshwater lakes.
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  • What are some predators of the jellyfish?

    Q: What are some predators of the jellyfish?

    A: Some predators of the jellyfish include other jellyfish, sunfish, some sea turtles and humans. Occasionally birds and other fish will bite around the non-venomous inner tissue of the jellyfish, dodging the outer tentacles altogether.
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  • How do jellyfish swim?

    Q: How do jellyfish swim?

    A: Jellyfish swim by opening and closing a part of their body called the bell, which is the transparent, sack like part of their body that the tentacles hang from. The bell catches water when it opens and ejects it when it closes, propelling the jellyfish forward.
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  • Where do box jellyfish live?

    Q: Where do box jellyfish live?

    A: According to National Geographic, box jellyfish, also called sea wasps, live off the coastal waters of Northern Australia and throughout the Indo-Pacific. Box jellyfish also are frequently found off the coasts of Vietnam, Hawaii and the Philippines.
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  • What kinds of food do jellyfish eat?

    Q: What kinds of food do jellyfish eat?

    A: Jellyfish are opportunistic carnivores that will eat almost anything they come across. Smaller jellyfish consume plankton, larger ones eat fish eggs, crustaceans and snails, and the very largest jellyfish can catch and eat whole fish. Jellyfish can also be cannibalistic.
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  • Can you get a pet jellyfish for kids?

    Q: Can you get a pet jellyfish for kids?

    A: Non-poisonous jellyfish, such as Moon jellyfish and Blue Blubber jellyfish, are widely available and appropriate as pets for children. Pet jellyfish for kids require a special aquarium and fish-specific diets.
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  • How do you treat a jellyfish sting?

    Q: How do you treat a jellyfish sting?

    A: Treatment for a jellyfish sting includes rinsing the area with seawater or a solution of salt water. With some types of stings, soaking the affected area in vinegar mixed with an equal amount of water helps to relieve the pain. Scraping the remaining tentacles with a credit card is also useful. Avoid rinsing the sting with fresh water, recommends KidsHealth.
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  • Q: How many babies do jellyfish have?

    A: Jellyfish release thousands of larvae that settle on the ocean floor and turn into polyps that become baby jellyfish. Male jellyfish release sperm into the water and the sperm either fertilizes eggs that the female releases into the water or enter through the female's mouth and fertilize her eggs.
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  • Q: What is the economic importance of Cnidarians?

    A: Although they may not look like it, many animals belonging to the phylum Cnidaria actually have a quite significant economic importance for humans, especially those belonging to the Anthozoa class. For instance, scientists have discovered many chemical compounds in Cnidarians that can be used to treat cancer and other illnesses.
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  • Q: When does the box jellyfish come to shore?

    A: The box jellyfish comes to shore from 8 to 12 days after a full moon event. This was determined by a study done by the University of Hawaii at Manoa in a period that extended for 14 years of monthly data.
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  • Q: What types of jellyfish are in Florida?

    A: Types of jellyfish in Florida include the moon jellyfish, the cannonball jellyfish, the sea nettle and the box jellyfish. Other jellyfish include the mushroom jelly. The Portuguese man-of-war isn't really a jellyfish, but looks and stings like one.
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  • Q: How long do jellyfish live?

    A: Most species of jellyfish live for less than one year. Some smaller species may only live for a few days. However, a type of jellyfish called Turritopsis is technically immortal, as it can age backwards into a polyp form and then produce hundreds of genetically identical adult forms.
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  • What are some facts about the box jellyfish?

    Q: What are some facts about the box jellyfish?

    A: Box jellyfish live by the coasts of Australia and in the Indo-Pacific Ocean. They have up to 15 tentacles, which can reach 10 feet in length. Although they do not have a central nervous system, box jellyfish have advanced vision.
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  • Q: What do jellyfish look like?

    A: Most jellyfish are translucent, often umbrella shaped organisms which come in a variety colors and sizes - some larger than a human and some as small as a pinhead. Though the majority of jellyfish are harmless to humans, there are a few species, such as the Portuguese man-of-war, that can cause severe injury and even death.
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