Information from NJDEP:
In light of the recent confirmed discovery of the clinging jellyfish in the Shrewsbury and Manasquan Rivers, I am writing to provide you with the most current information DEP has about these marine animals.
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It is important to remember that as of today there are confirmed sightings of the clinging jellyfish only in the Shrewsbury and Manasquan Rivers. There have been no confirmed sightings in Barnegat Bay. In addition, this species of jellyfish is unlikely to be found along our ocean coast and, as expected, there have not been any confirmed sightings in those waters.
To determine, as best as possible, the extent to which clinging jellyfish are present in the areas where some have already been found, DEP has contracted with Montclair State University’s Dr. Paul Bologna. Dr. Bologna and his team will be examining various locations in the Shrewsbury and Manasquan Rivers, as well as in the northern section of Barnegat Bay near the Point Pleasant Canal. This study will increase our understanding of the presence of clinging jellyfish in these waters.
This species of jellyfish prefers shallow waters that contain such plants as eelgrass, or shells, to which it clings during the day. Because it is sensitive to light, it tends to remain clinging to the plant or shell until nighttime, when it rises in the water column to feed. If, however, it is disturbed during the day by someone wading or swimming past, it may release itself and sting the person who inadvertently disturbed it.