Stay Eat Events Weather Beaches

Remarkable Number of Moon Jellies Hit N. Oregon Coast

Published 01/15/2019 at 6:33 PM PDT
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Remarkable Number of Moon Jellies Hit N. Oregon Coast

Latest Coastal Lodging News Alerts
In Seaside:
Includes exclusive listings; some specials even in summer
In Cannon Beach:
Includes rentals not listed anywhere else
In Manzanita, Wheeler, Rockaway Beach:
Check each listing for specials
In Pacific City, Oceanside:
Some Deals even in summer; great packages
In Lincoln City:
Major price drops on some dates and some lodgings
In Depoe Bay, Gleneden Beach:
Specials can still be found
In Newport:
Includes exclusive listings not found anywhere
In Waldport
New amenities offered; specials
In Yachats, Florence
Some specials; lodgings not listed anywhere else

(Cannon Beach, Oregon) – Something slimy this way comes. (Photos courtesy Haystack Rock Awareness Program).

A fairly large stranding of jellyfish has beachgoers amazed on the north Oregon coast right now, especially at Cannon Beach. The Haystack Rock Awareness Program snapped these photos in the last 24 hours of a rather large run of moon jellies – surreal and translucent creatures that seem to have hit several places along the coastline because of recent storm activity and winds from the west.

Moon jellies go by the scientific name Aurelia aurita. Once you find them on a beach, they’ve almost always been dead for awhile.

Tiffany Boothe of Seaside Aquarium said they have no bones and they have no brain.


“This species of jellyfish ranges from Alaska to California, and is the proverbial ‘drifter,’ as it floats along wherever the ocean’s current takes it,” Boothe said. “They eat tiny marine life such as plankton and diatoms, which they pick up with the tiny hair-like tentacles that lace the outside edge of the jellyfish. Though they sting their prey, us large, thick-skinned humans cannot be harmed by this jelly.”

On top of it, they have no heart as well, like other invertebrates.

While in the water, they are fully spread out with all those tentacles and that bell shape. When they arrive on Oregon coast beaches, that’s when they flatten out into the pancake-like oval you see.

Although quite common off the Oregon coast, moon jellies are more common in tropical waters. Yet they have a very wide range of temperature tolerances, from as low as 21 degrees up to nearly 90 degrees.

Most moon jellies stranding on Oregon coast beaches are around a foot in diameter. You can see from the shots provided by Haystack Rock Awareness Program they're likely clocking in a bit less. They can be larger as well. During these stranding events, you may find a dozen or you may find dozens and dozens.

However, they don’t show up in enormous numbers like those purple sailors (or velella velella as they’re mostly known). Those tinier creatures – vaguely related to a jellyfish – can show up thousands at a time, causing a nasty stink if they’re left to dry in the sun.

What causes them to appear? It’s simply the wind and maybe a combination of upwellings and heavy surf conditions. The Oregon coast is an incredibly dynamic place where creatures wash up all the time. Like almost all jellyfish or related critters like salps and velella velella, they have no means to propel themselves.

In this case, winds probably took hold of them and shoved them on land.

While these jellyfish don’t sting, per se, it’s not a good idea to handle them. They could be hosting bad bacteria. The Haystack Rock Awareness Program suggests not handling anything on Oregon coast beaches you can’t identify. Aurelia aurita are one of about ten jellyfish that are very similar, and it’s often hard to tell them apart from each other. More photos below.

Lodging in Cannon Beach - Where to eat - Maps - Virtual Tours


Sandlake Country Inn. Close to Sand Lake beach area - not a bad place to check for jellyfish. 8505 Galloway Rd. (Near Pacific City, Oregon). 877-726-3525. 503-965-6745. www.sandlakecountryinn.com.

 



 



 

More About Oregon Coast hotels, lodging.....

More About Oregon Coast Restaurants, Dining.....

 

Oregon Coast event or adventure you can't miss

 



Coastal Spotlight


LATEST Related Oregon Coast Articles

Sneaker Wave Dangers Sunday on Oregon, Washington Coast: How to Enjoy
Large breakers and the substantial dangers of sneaker waves; South coast no issues
Nocturnal Revelations at a Secret Oregon Coast Spot: Viewpoint Behind the Vis...
There's only a small bench here, and a small opening between buildings from which to rest and look down at the rocky shelves next to the southern side of the bay mouth. Travel tips
Four Unheralded, Wowing Wonders of Depoe Bay: Central Oregon Coast
There's so much to this little town you couldn't explore it all in one day, and yet most of its truly amazing aspects lie just below the obvious. Travel tips, whales
Central Oregon Coast History Museum Takes It Up a Notch in February
Some new features, a new exhibit and a talk are all winter highlights at the North Lincoln County Historical Museum in Lincoln City, adding some extra flavor. Lincoln City events
King Tides and Oregon Coast Citizen Science Events at Yachats, Florence
King tides and other forms of citizen science will be the focus of two events later in January. Yachats events
S. Oregon Coast's Charleston Features Annual Crab Shindig Feb. 8
The little place with the big marina on the southern Oregon coast gets rather crabby about this time of year. Florence events
Water Spout and Confirmed Tornado Today on Oregon Coast: Some Damage
A water spout appeared off Depoe Bay and what is now a confirmed tornado touched down in Manzanita. Weather
Storms Deposit Oddities like Sea Cucumber, Velella onto Oregon Coast
Unique creatures have popped up, including the famed velella velella and a weird little critter that looks like a worm but isn't. Science

Back to Oregon Coast

Contact Advertise on BeachConnection.net
All Content, unless otherwise attributed, copyright BeachConnection.net Unauthorized use or publication is not permitted

Oregon Coast Lodging
Rentals
Specials

Dining

Events Calendar

Oregon Coast Weather

Travel News

Search for Oregon Coast Subjects, Articles

Virtual Tours, Maps
Deep Details