JAUME Font, the Balearic minister of the environment, yesterday warned that a plague of jellyfish, of the Pelagia Noctiluca species has arrived in the north of Minorca and there was a danger of them drifting to Majorca over the next few days. The warning was aimed specifically at Alcudia and the Port of Pollensa.
Font said that the ministry has asked the Institute of Mediterranean Studies to carry out a scientific investigation into the arrival of the jellyfish from the Catalan coast, so that the government can set up a protocol to guarantee public health. The minister pointed out that these jellyfish are causing serious problems on the coasts of Catalonia and Castellon, and some beaches have had to be closed. The minister added that there had been reports of up to 5'000 jellyfish stings in a single day in these areas.
But, he said, “the situation in the Balearics is not the same as that in Catalonia,” adding that at the moment no specific action was being planned until the report from the Institute was received. He added that any ministry action in the case of a risk to public health would also “guarantee a balance with the ecosystem.” He pointed out that the jellyfish were food for turtles, and so it was not possible to collect them all.
The minister's warning, however, came a little late for people who visited Sa Calobra on Sunday.
There, the Red Cross volunteers were kept busy treating people for stings.
This was just one of a series of reports about plagues of jellyfish on beaches along the rugged north coast of the island.
The island suffers from jellyfish plagues every year. They drift and arrive at different points of the coast, depending on the changes in wind and currents.


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