NCEAS-sponsored outreach event brings jellyfish science to the public

photo of a large pink jellyfish in motion, its mushroom-shaped pink crown expanded for propulsion and its bright pink body and willowy filament-like tentacles trailing behind as it passes by a tropical rocky reef Jellyfish scientists from around the world took part in an NCEAS-sponsored outreach event to inform and educate the general public about jellies and jellyfish blooms, the good and the bad aspects of jellies, and their importance to both coastal communities such as Santa Barbara and to ocean ecosystems around the world. Called Jellyfish ROCK: Reaching Out to the Community & Kids, the event generated a lot of enthusiasm from community members eager to learn about the diversity and beauty of jellies! More than 170 attendees converged at the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History for the interactive evening of videos, presentations from international jellyfish experts, live jellyfish, and exhibition of children’s artwork from around the world. The event was a BIG success for all involved, and NCEAS is certainly proud to have sponsored both Jellyfish ROCK and the NCEAS jellyfish working group that inspired it!

the first in a collage of thumbnail photos, a transparent white torpedo-shaped jellyfish propels downward against a black backdrop thumbnail photo of a sun-dappled blue bottle jellyfish, otherwise known as Portuguese Man o War, stranded on the flat sand of an outgoing tide, see in the distance thumbnail photo of a white mushroom-shaped jellyfish swimming, with its combination of lacy and wispy tentacles flowing behind thumbnail photo of a white-spotted crown and beige-bodied jellyfish suspended with its wispy translucent tentacles hanging beneath thumbnail photo of an outbreak of moon jellyfish, their translucent white, moon-shaped bodies floating in close proximity on the surface of the ocean thumbnail photo of a nipple-topped jellyfish in clear turquoise water, its squat, disk-shaped body edged in frills and coated by dots of multiple colors resembling sprinkled cake decorations thumbnail photo of a glowing bluish-white jellyfish, its thick feathery body appendages attached to a mushroom-shaped top




The Aquarium of the Pacific organized an international children's art contest in conjunction with Jellyfish ROCK. The contest inspired more than 550 jellyfish drawings, paintings and three-dimensional artwork from 14 countries and 4 U.S. states! Many of the pieces were displayed at the museum during the event. Winning entries came from Japan, Spain, the U.K. and the U.S.

collage of children's artwork submitted from around the world to the Jellyfish ROCK art contest

Jellyfish ROCK was such a great success for NCEAS thanks to host Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History, art contest organizer Aquarium of the Pacific, and Communication Partnership for Science and the Sea (COMPASS), which directed the program development and delivery. Other significant contributions came from master of ceremonies Michael Todd of Miller-McCune, the Dauphin Island Sea Lab Foundation, Blue Ocean Productions, Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI), and NOAA Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary.

Videos of the event are available on You Tube:


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Posted on December 2, 2010