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Unlocking the Potential: Experts Advocate Research on Jellyfish Resources in Indian Waters

During the seventh International Jellyfish Blooms Symposium (JBS7) in Thiruvananthapuram, experts underscored the imperative for enhanced understanding of jellyfish species in Indian waters. Addressing knowledge gaps related to jellyfish fisheries and sustainable marine resource management, the symposium, organized by the Department of Aquatic Biology and Fisheries at the University of Kerala and ICAR-Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI), highlighted India’s significance in the realm of jellyfish fisheries.

Experts at JBS7 emphasized the need for comprehensive research into jellyfish stocks, their pivotal role in ecosystems, and their position in the food chain. Despite the evolving importance of jellyfish across various industries, the symposium aimed to foster collaborations in studying their unique physiological and biochemical characteristics.

Professor Mark J. Gibbons, from the University of Western Cape South Africa, stressed the importance of the Ecosystem Approach to Fisheries (EAF) in harmonizing human needs with broader ecosystem requirements. In his talk on ‘Jellyfish, People, and the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals,’ Dr. Gibbons urged caution in managing this resource, considering the existing uncertainties about jellyfish.

A. Biju Kumar, Professor and Head of the Department of Aquatic Biology at Kerala University, emphasized the necessity for focused research into jellyfish diversity in Indian waters. He highlighted jellyfish’s historical significance, having been the subject of two Nobel Prize discoveries.

The symposium, attended by international experts such as Michael N. Dawson from the University of California and Kylie Pitt from Griffith University Australia, is expected to conclude on Saturday, fostering collaborative efforts to unlock the potential of jellyfish resources in Indian waters.

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