Jellyfish Consume Larger Prey Implying That They Will Occupy a Higher Position in the Food Chain as They Mature

Jellyfish Consume Larger Prey Implying That They Will Occupy a Higher Position in the Food Chain as They Mature

Researchers confirmed what was already known: jellyfish consume larger prey as they grow, which means they move up the food chain.

They also discovered that some “healthy fat” concentrations increase as jellyfish grow.

These changes could be influenced by their diet, as the jellyfish accumulate more fatty acids as they feed on larger prey with higher levels of fatty acids.

Jellyfish Size Might Influence Their Nutritional Value


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Jellyfish can be both predators and prey as they drift through ocean currents.

They eat almost anything they can get their hands on and follow the typical oceanic pattern of large consuming small, as per ScienceDaily.

According to a recent University of British Columbia study on these gelatinous globs, jellyfish may become more nutritious as they grow larger.

Jellyfish grow in size due to the likelihood of encountering prey, the length and number of tentacles, and the size of their bells (the umbrella-like part of them).

As a result, smaller jellyfish consume phytoplankton, microzooplankton, and eggs, whereas larger jellyfish consume all of the above as well as shrimp and fish.

Jellyfish, on the other hand, are primarily preyed upon by animals both in and out of the water.

They are important prey because they are easy to digest and catch due to their high-water content.

“Our study looked more closely to see if there was any information we could draw about nutrition in jellyfish,” said Jessica Schaub, lead author, and PhD student at the Institute for Oceans and Fisheries and the Department of Earth, Oceans, and Atmospheric Sciences at UBC.

This information helps us understand the true nutritional value of jellyfish.

Schaub investigated how energy moving through a food web might appear to jellyfish.

What they eat, what they are made of, and how this may influence what eats them.

First, Schaub confirmed what was already known: jellyfish consume larger prey as they grow, which means they move up the food chain.

The researchers discovered some evidence that these changes may be influenced by their diet, as the jellyfish accumulate more fatty acids as they feed on larger prey with higher levels of fatty acids.

The study discovered size trends, highlighting how important jellyfish size is when discussing marine food webs.

The inclusion of these creatures will not only improve their representation in food web models, but will also help inform other studies.

Also Read: Brainless Jellyfish Actively Hunt, Surprise Experts

Jellyfish Eating Habits

Jellyfish have tiny stinging cells in their tentacles that they use to stun or paralyze their prey before devouring them, as per American Oceans.

Their mouth is located inside their bell-shaped body. They consume and dispose of waste from this opening.

Jellyfish are propelled forward as they squirt water from their mouths.

Tentacles dangle from the smooth baglike body and sting prey.

Jellyfish stings can be painful and sometimes fatal to humans. Jellyfish, on the other hand, do not attack humans on purpose.

Most stings occur when people inadvertently touch a jellyfish, but stings from dangerous species can be fatal. Jellyfish consume their food quickly.

They couldn’t float if they had to carry a large, undigested meal around with them.

Jellyfish are critical components of the ocean’s food chain. They eat a wide range of smaller organisms, such as microscopic plankton, crustaceans, and even other jellyfish.

In turn, jellyfish are an important part of the diets of other sea creatures. Sunfish and turtles, for example, frequently feed on jellyfish.

Some people catch jellyfish and prepare them in a variety of dishes. Overall, jellyfish are vital to the ocean’s ecosystem.

They are one-of-a-kind creatures due to their unusual feeding habits and varied diet.

Related article: New Jellyfish Species Discovered in the Philippines

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US Fungus Outbreak: Deadly Candida Auris Fungi Spreads in 28 States [CDC Warns]

US Fungus Outbreak: Deadly Candida Auris Fungi Spreads in 28 States [CDC Warns]

A deadly fungus is spreading across the United States and has already infected more than half the states, mainly affecting vulnerable or health-impaired patients in medical facilities. US health authorities have identified the Candida auris as the culprit behind the US fungus outbreak.

Candida Auris Fungus

Candida Auris

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During a press release on Monday, March 20, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced that the Candida auris (C. auris) is an emerging fungus species that is an urgent “antimicrobial resistance (AR) threat” which is spreading quickly in US healthcare facilities. The information came from a CDC data published in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine.

The data shows a growing concern in 2021 when the number of antimicrobial-resistant cases of C. auris has tripled. In particular, the pathogen was resistant to echinocandins, the anti-fungal medicine widely used and recommended by health authorities for C. auris infection treatment.

The CDC clarifies the said fungus species is not a threat to healthy people but only to those with severe medical conditions, have medical devices, or have frequent confinement in healthcare facilities, where it can spread easily and cause severe infections with high mortality or death rate.

Also Read: ALERT: Deadly, Highly-Resistant Fungal Infection Reported in 5 States

US Fungus Outbreak

Since it was reported in the US in 2016, Candida auris infections have increased to a total of 3,270 clinical cases (where infection is present) and 7,413 screening cases (the fungus was detected but has not caused any infection yet) as of December 2021, the CDC reported.

CDC epidemiologist Dr. Meghan Lyman, the Annals of Internal Medicine paper’s lead author, stated the rapidly rising cases and geographic outbreak of C. auris is concerning and various measures are needed, including surveillance and quicker diagnostic tests.

The highest spike n cases occurred between 2020 and 2021. Based on a video report by WGN News, the fungus has already spread in 28 states across continental US, including Illinois, citing the CDC warns that the health issue is an “urgent threat.”

What is Candida Auris?

Candida Auris can grow as a yeast and belongs to the genus Candida. As mentioned earlier, very sick people or those with weakened immune systems are vulnerable to the fungus infection called “candidiasis,” according to health authorities.

According to the CDC, Candida typically lives on a person’s skin and inside the body, including the mouth, gut, throat, and vagina, without causing any health problems. However, candidiasis infection takes place if certain conditions change inside the vagina that would drive the fungi’s growth.

Candidiasis, also called as vaginal candidiasis, candida vaginitis, or vulvovaginal candidiasis, are susceptible to fungal growth due to internal changes caused by hormones, medicines, or the immune system, the US health organization adds.

According to Mayo Clinic, the said vaginal yeast infection exhibits symptoms such as discharge, irritation, and intense itchiness of the vagina and vulva, the tissue at the vaginal opening.

Other C. auris-driven infections are described as a severe illness, which occurs once the fungus enters the person’s bloodstream, as well as wound infections and ear infections, according to the health and medicine website News Medical.

Related Article: Deadly, Drug-Resistant Fungus Arrives in US: Fast Facts About Candida Auris

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Increased Burnings in the Southwestern Amazon’s Arising Deforestation Horizon

Increased Burnings in the Southwestern Amazon’s Arising Deforestation Horizon

Between 2003 and 2019, a swath of the Amazon Rainforest nearly twice the size of Luxembourg was destroyed by fire.

The region is located in the southwest of Amazonas state, in Brazil’s northern region, and includes parts of nine municipalities with some of the country’s worst sustainable development indicators.

Deforestation had been increasing in the area, owing primarily to illegal logging and other agricultural-related activities along two highways that run through it.

Fire destroyed 4,141 square kilometers (km2) of forest between 2003 and 2009, 3,999 km2 of which was primary (native) vegetation. According to a year-by-year breakdown, the area affected by fire ranged from 33 km2 in 2011 to 681 km2 in 2019. Furthermore, 6,484 km2 of pasture and crops were destroyed during the period.

Emerging deforestation frontier in southwestern Amazon


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These figures come from a study conducted by scientists at the National Disaster Surveillance and Early Warning Center (CEMADEN) and the National Space Research Institute (INPE), both Brazilian institutions, in collaboration with colleagues at universities and other research institutions in Brazil and abroad, as per

According to the article, which focuses on Boca do Acre, a municipality in Amazonas state, deforestation increased the occurrence of burned areas, resulting in the transformation of the landscape from forest to cropland and pastureland, particularly near highways BR-317 and BR-364.

Factors such as the lengthening of the dry season and the occurrence of more extreme weather events made the region more vulnerable to anthropogenic (human-caused) fires.

Furthermore, the accumulation of organic matter from deforested areas fueled ongoing fires, causing them to spread.

Protected areas, such as conservation units and Indigenous territories, on the other hand, acted as a deterrent to deforestation. In the period 2003-19, the fire destroyed only 189.13 km2, or 1.3% of the total, primarily near roads and farms in the Boca do Acre and Apurin Indigenous Territories.

Their research identified the extent and frequency of fires, as well as correlations with changes in land cover and climate, indicating priority conservation areas.

They’ve also investigated the fire hazard of forest on undesignated public land and adjacent to rural properties.

Recent deforestation is increasingly close to protected areas, making them even more vulnerable, according to Débora Dutra, the article’s first author.

Undesignated land is federal land that has not been designated for a specific use, such as conservation or settlement.

This is the most vulnerable category to encroachment by land grabbers and squatters. The Amazon Rainforest is the world’s largest and most biodiverse tropical forest, and it helps to regulate the global climate.

This includes the “flying river,” which transports massive amounts of water from the region to the rest of the continent.

Through transpiration, the process by which water traverses the plant and evaporates from aerial parts such as stems, flowers, and canopy leaves, the forest’s many trees release water vapor into the atmosphere.

The moisture released into the atmosphere is carried by air currents and deposited as precipitation elsewhere.

Also Read: Brazil’s Newly Found Fish Species Are Threatened by Amazon Deforestation 

Highest deforestation rate in six years

Researchers concluded in March 2022, based on over three decades of satellite data, that the Amazon rainforest’s health is deteriorating, as per BBC.

They found signs of a loss of resilience in more than 75% of the forest, with trees taking longer to recover from droughts caused by climate change, as well as human impacts like deforestation and fires. Last year, at the COP26 climate change summit in Glasgow, more than 100 governments pledged to halt and reverse deforestation by 2030.

Environmentalists blame rising levels of deforestation on Jair Bolsonaro, Brazil’s right-wing president who has rolled back environmental safeguards.

Brazil’s environment ministry said it had been aggressive in combating environmental crimes, but it did not mention the increase in deforestation in a statement.

According to Dr. Manoela Machado of the University of Oxford, the high level of deforestation is also fueling a higher than usual number of fires for this time of year.

After trees are felled, fires are frequently started to clear the land for agriculture, so more deforestation means more fires, according to Dr. Machado.

Related article: Deforestation, Degradation Turns 26% of Amazon Rainforest to Grassland, Report Reveals 

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US Weather Update: Severe Thunderstorms, Flooding Rain to Spread Almost 20 States

US Weather Update: Severe Thunderstorms, Flooding Rain to Spread Almost 20 States

Severe thunderstorms and flooding rain are possible to spread in almost 20 states across the continental US in the coming days this week. During this period, disruption to flights and affect other public transport as well. Power outages from downed power lines and trees cannot be ruled out as well.


US Weather Update

Severe Thunderstorm

(Photo : Image by Joe from Pixabay )

AccuWeather weather meteorologists on Tuesday, March 21, continued to issue warnings for a heightened risk of flooding rainfall and severe thunderstorms from the southern Plains to the Ohio Valley and Southeast.

The same storm system responsible for causing heavy rain, snow, and damaging winds in California will continue to traverse in an eastward direction to the Central US during Thursday and Friday, March 23 and March 24.

Also Read: Severe Thunderstorm Places over 60 Million Americans at Risk in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast

Severe Weather Threat

The severe weather threat comes as the official start off the US spring season began on Monday, March 20. However, the time of the year also reminds us of an increased in tornado activities across the US, FOX Weather reported.

Earlier in March, powerful thunderstorms in Kentucky killed nine people and left hundreds of thousands of customers in multiple state without electricity, according to The New York Times.

NWS Meteorologist Richard Bann described early this month’s weather phenomenon as a “multi-hazard event,” as evident in the South US.

What is a Thunderstorm?

A thunderstorm is a weather phenomenon or event where a rain shower occurs and is accompanied by the sound of thunder. This is according to the National Severe Storms Laboratory (NSSL), which clarifies that since thunder comes from lightning, all thunderstorms can generate lightning. The NSSL is under the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

The NOAA – NSSL acknowledges that meteorologists sometimes use the word “convection” when pertaining about thunderstorms. Convection, normally manifests due to surface heating, is an upward atmospheric motion that transports any particles or matter in the air, particularly any moisture available. This process makes thunderstorms a result of convection.

A thunderstorm is designated as “severe” when its system contains one or more of the following; 1 inch or greater hail, wind gusts in excess of 57.5 miles per hour (50 knots), or a tornado, also called as a twister.

Thunderstorm Frequency

The said US government agency estimates there are 16 million thunderstorms worldwide each year. Meanwhile, there are currently around 2,000 thunderstorms occurring simultaneously. In the US alone, there are around 100,000 thunderstorms annually; wherein about 10% of these intensify into severe thunderstorms.

In terms of hazards, thunderstorms are known for bringing the following threats: hail, wind, and lightning, according to the National Weather Service (NWS).

The first thunderstorm-related threat involves small ice particles that can turn into giant hail stones, where sometimes reach a size similar to a golf ball. Second, damaging winds can come either as tornadoes or straight line winds. Lastly, lightning strikes can reach up to 10 miles from a main thunderstorm, according to the NWS.

Related Article: Severe Thunderstorm Threatens Central, Eastern US During First Week of Spring [Weather Forecast]

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Median Eyes in Trilobites Found After 150 Years of Multiple Researches

Median Eyes in Trilobites Found After 150 Years of Multiple Researches

After 150 years of study, scientists discovered trilobites had single median eyes.

According to new research by Brigitte Schoenemann from the University of Cologne and Professor Euan Clarkson from the University of Edinburgh, trilobites were ancient sea creatures that had single median eyes on their foreheads in addition to their compound eyes.

Single Median Eyes in Trilobites

All arthropods and numerous relatives of the extinct trilobites have single eyes like this.

After 150 years of research, the so-called median eyes, which are common to all arthropods, had not yet been identified in trilobites.

The researchers believe that the median eyes were typical of the animal’s larval stage.

The carapace’s transparent layer, which turned opaque during the fossilization process, covered the single eyes.

The ocelli were not found until now as a result of both situations.

Additionally, the scientists discovered median eyes in other, roughly 500 million-year-old arthropods.

These arthropods had varying numbers of median eyes according to their evolutionary stage.

In the future, it will be possible to categorize the evolutionary status of specific arthropod species using the number as well as the shape of the single eyes.

The study was recently published, along with the team’s findings in the journal Scientific Reports.

The two types of eyes that arthropods typically have are compound eyes and what are known as “median eyes” or middle eyes.

The latter is situated between the compound eyes in the middle of the forehead.

150 Years Into Research

Only trilobites, a major group of Paleozoic arthropods, are thought to lack what appear to be median eyes.

This was the belief up until Schoenemann and Clarkson analyzed a trilobite specimen from Aulacopleura koninckii that had a portion of its head scraped off.

At the front of the head, they discovered three nearly identically shaped, small, oval, dark, and unnoticeable spots of the same size.

These three buildings are parallel to one another and slightly fan out on the underside.

Each of the three spots has a consistent, dark brownish color and a smooth, clear outline.

Also Read: Giant Ant Queen Fossil Suggests Insects had Higher Tolerance to Cold Weather, Experts Say 

Mysterious Missing Median Eyes

Schoenemann explained that this structure’s distinct, regular appearance sets it apart from the random formations left behind by decay or fossilization, and it is consistent with the expected remnants of simple, pigment-layered median eyes. Even though it is just one discovery, the University of Cologne claims that it supports the theory that trilobites primarily had median eyes.

Thus, the researchers have discovered the reason why trilobites lack middle eyes. According to Schoenemann, these cup eyes are descended from the primitive stump-footed animals, the tiny velvet worms. The modern, extremely conservative arachnids still have the original median eye count of 2, which is still the case. The modern-day, extremely conservative arachnids still have the original median eye count of 2, which is still the case.

There are four phylogenetic, extremely primitive arthropods, including Cindarella eucalla from the lower Cambrian of China. In contrast, there are only three contemporary animals like insects and crustaceans. There is now a crucial tool for determining an arthropod’s position in the evolutionary tree thanks to the number of median eyes in an arthropod, PhysOrg reports.

Related Article: 24,000-Year-Old Skeletons of 7,000 Extinct Animal Species Unearthed in Chile 

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2 Invasive Mudsnails from New Zealand Found in  Montana Creek

2 Invasive Mudsnails from New Zealand Found in Montana Creek

Aquatic invasive mudsnails from New Zealand were found dead in a Montana creek called Silverbow last week, not far from the Warm Springs Ponds outlet.

Invasive Mudsnails in Montana Creek

Mudsnails have not yet been detected before in the Upper Clark Fork watershed, according to authorities.

According to experts, invasive species have a lasting effect on the local waters.

An aquatic invasive species called New Zealand mudsnails, which can have a long-lasting effect on the local waters was found last week in Silverbow Creek close to Warm Springs Ponds’ outlet.

According to Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks, this is the first time mudsnails have been spotted in the Upper Clark Fork watershed.

Only two dead mudsnails have so far been discovered in Silverbow Creek by Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks staff, but more surveys will be done once the weather warms up and it is easier to find snails.

The aquatic invasive species can be found in many different Montanan waterbodies.

The snails can rapidly increase in population size and geographic distribution, which could alter the ecology of the waterbodies in which they are found.

They are difficult, if not impossible, to get rid of once they are established.

Invasive Mudsnails from New Zealand

The Madison River in Montana was the first place where New Zealand mud snails were discovered in 1995. Since then, they have spread to the Beaverhead, Bighorn, Jefferson, Upper Missouri, as well as Upper Yellowstone Rivers.

Wading boots are a convenient way to transport New Zealand mudsnails, which can stay alive for weeks without water.

The wading gear used by anglers to move the invasive snail from one body of water to another was most likely the cause of the recent mudsnail introduction.

Prevention is the key to limiting the spread of aquatic invasive species.

Because of this, FWP advises boaters to clean, drain, as well as dry all gear after each use, particularly after accessing infested waters.

Officials also urge locals to report any mudsnail sightings, NBC Montana reported.

Also Read: Invasive Snail Boosts Population of Endangered Bird in Florida 

The Spread

The Montana Lakebook stated that since people spread the invasive snail by moving fish or bait, attaching it to waders and fishing gear, and cloning, it only takes a small mudsnail to infest a body of water.

The snails can also endure days without water by using moist equipment.

By eating algae and many native bottom-dwelling organisms, invasive mudsnails change aquatic habitats and food webs when they are present in large populations.

Additionally, according to Montana Field Guides, fish can transport New Zealand mudsnails (Potamopyrgus antipodarum), which can survive passage through their guts.

It has traveled throughout Montana on the soles of fishermen’s wading boots, going to various bodies of water.

Additionally, through positive rheotactic behavior, it can move 60 m upstream in three months and float by itself or on mats of green algae.

It has the ability to react to chemical stimuli in the water, such as the smell of fish that are hungry, which causes it to move to the underparts of rocks to avoid being eaten.

Related Article: Invasive, Destructive Giant Land Snails Puts Florida County Under Quarantine 

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