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Christmas surprise for Loro Parque visitors with new jellyfish arrivals 

page 30 CHRISTMAS SURPRISE)

Loro Parque has managed to reproduce, for the first time in Spain, a jellyfish from the Chrysaora pacifica species.

Although it can be seen in other institutions, until now it has not been possible to reproduce it or grow it in aquariums in Spain

The reproduction of this jellyfish native to Japan and the Pacific Ocean, like that of most jellyfish, is very complex, because in its cycle there are two phases: one sexual, in which the male fertilizes the eggs produced by the female, and another asexual, in which the larva divides into tiny jellyfish that are piled up one on the other, as if it were a pile of dishes, to finally free, grow and give place to adults.

This asexual phase, called estrobilation, only takes place when conditions of salinity, temperature, food or water quality are favourable, so getting this type of production under human care is quite an achievement. This adds to other conservation successes of the AquaViva team, which already at the end of the year reproduced, also for the first time in Spain, the jellyfish Phacellophora camtschatica, a species almost unprece-dented in European zoos and that presents a great comple-xity in lacria.

For news like this, AquaViva often awakens the interest of the university community. This year, without going any further, two young researchers from the EOMAR group of the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, visited the Aquarium to study the com-plex metabolism of the medusas to through the Pelagia noctiluca, a species that already has six generations thanks to the success of the breeding system and its maintenance in Loro Parque.

For the curator of the Aquarium, Ester Alonso, the reproduction of the Chrysaora pacifica is a new achievement of the team of professionals from Loro Parque, saying: “Our job is to know more and more the biology of each one of our species, and to reproduce them with good results; it is important to remember that there are many species that disappear without even knowing that they were in the sea “.

The new species is currently in the quarantine of AquaViva and will pass to the exhibition this Christmas for the enjoyment of all visitors, who will be able to observe closely their brown and orange hypnotics.