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JELLYFISH in the Italian Mediterranean--Predictions?

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Jul 21st, 2010, 03:05 PM
  #1
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JELLYFISH in the Italian Mediterranean--Predictions?

I have several Italian coastal destinations (and at least one in Spain) on my list for the hopefully not-too-distant future. (MY next trip will be to Puglia, in September)

But it occurred to me, after reading a recent and excellent report on the Aeolian Islands and Taormina (thank you, Aprillilacs) , that anyone headed for these coasts, and planning to swim in the sea, needs to be aware of the persistent jellyfish problem that has plagued these waters in the recent past.

I would hate, for example, to plan a week in the Cilento based around swimming, walking, and eating, to have to confront hordes of these horrid creatures on my first offshore jaunt.

So: Does anyone know what we can expect for summer 2010, and if there are any areas of the coast that are particularly hard-hit each year? Or is it totally random and dependent on water temperature and other weather conditions? Are they usually gone by September? Are there any jellyfish-free zones? (I know that they cannot read the signs, even if they are posted in Italian)
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Jul 21st, 2010, 04:23 PM
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Not personally a resident of Puglia (Apullia), but have family who live near Fasano (Pezze de Greco)that we have visited many times. We routinely went swimming on the beaches near, as early as May and as late as October (we are keeners!). Never had a jelly-fish problem, but it could be cyclical: I will let others who have places there give the final answer.
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Jul 21st, 2010, 04:31 PM
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why not just swim in the pools, providing that they are long enough for you??
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Jul 22nd, 2010, 04:28 AM
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Thanks, LJ. There have been massive invasions around Italy recent years but I've not heard of any in Puglia. Let's just hope they stay away!

Aprillilacs mentioned huge gobs of them in Taormina and the Aeolians as early as may and I then began to wonder.


http://www.independent.co.uk/environ...gs-875787.html
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Jul 22nd, 2010, 04:40 AM
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Interesting: JellyWatch project


http://www.ciesm.org/marine/programs/jellywatch.htm
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Jul 22nd, 2010, 07:43 AM
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"I would hate, for example, to plan a week in the Cilento based around swimming, walking, and eating, to have to confront hordes of these horrid creatures on my first offshore jaunt."

I swam off Santa Maria di Castellabate almost every day for two weeks during last September. The water was normally very clear, and on two days I encountered Jellyfish. They weren't in huge swarms, but I was finding them every 50m or so. As I was wearing goggles so could see the extent of the stingers, I found it fascinating to follow a couple for a while. They were a very lovely Sky Blue colour (they were sort of classic jellyfish, not the portugese man o war, or bluebottle types)
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Jul 22nd, 2010, 08:22 AM
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This April Ischia had massive amounts of jellyfish.
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Jul 22nd, 2010, 09:07 AM
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eks,

You can eat them!

http://www.starchefs.com/features/ch...h_a_sosa.shtml

On a more serious note, I would imagine it's kind of a Jaws problem, with local tourist offices being reluctant to report a problem. But fisherman will tell you. I'd ask around before plunging in.
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Jul 22nd, 2010, 12:56 PM
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Zeppole, thanks! But it is a bit more complicated. I would not, for example, want to plan a summer/early fall vacation to certain coastal destinations if I knew that there was a likelihood of an invasion!

Unfortunately, like so much in life, it does not appear that this can be predicted..I was just looking for some guidelines and hoping against hope that there were areas that had so far remained immune to the problem..

But now that Ann has chimed in with the distressing news that they were around Ischia in April...it looks as if all bets are off for this season!

Surprisingly, this issue has not been raised in any of the dozens and dozens of threads related to beach-going on the Amalfi (or should I say, Almafi) Coast...

In my own neck of the woods, they usually appeared in August, but we now see them even in June..
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Jul 22nd, 2010, 01:27 PM
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We vacation in St Tropez each year for the last three years, mid june to mid july. First year the water was warm and wonderful, no jellyfish, second year there were a bizillion jellyfish. I only swam in the sea twice in three weeks, kids were taking them out with nets, buckets full.
This year nothing along the pampalone beaches, but there were a few, very few, up at Cap Antibes.
I don't think there is a way to figure it out, it has something to do with the temperature of the water, but to tell you the truth, the first and third year water was the same to me, bathwater warm!
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Jul 22nd, 2010, 01:32 PM
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I read the link you provided and concluded it wasn't possible to predict. It left me wondering if it had more to do with currents than proximity -- meaning, I could see jellyfish from the Aeolian islands and Cilento could not if the warm water current bypassed Cilento. (We haven't seen any in Liguria this season, so far as I know.)

Reading Susanna's post, maybe you don't even need to ask the fishermen. You'll see them if you're there!

My impression of Amalfi travelers on Fodor's is that they don't go swimming, but the trip reports are just now trickling in.
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Jul 22nd, 2010, 01:37 PM
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PS; Have you ever considered a swimming vacation to Sirolo on the Adriatic?

http://www.zanzig.com/travel/italy-photos/0164-086.htm

http://cache.virtualtourist.com/3147...ach-Sirolo.jpg

http://www.locandarocco.it/en/sirolo_conero.htm

I'll bet vicenzod would give you great tips.
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Jul 22nd, 2010, 02:22 PM
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Zeppole: Le Marche is on my (very long and growing longer by the day) list. I had never heard before of Sirolo. It looks spectacular. And we already know that the food in that area is superb! I got my first inklings of this from the Matthew Fort book, and from my dinner at Trattoria Monti in Rome.. For a while we had a renowned Marchigiano chef here in NY--Fabio Trabocchi

http://www.fabiotrabocchi.com/cookbook.html


http://www.livinginlemarche.com/index.php?q=resorts




I had thought that there were many swimmers among the Amalfi-goers, because there is so much talk about beaches in Italy....(??)
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Jul 22nd, 2010, 06:45 PM
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They look at the pebbles while waiting on line for the tour boats.

You know Ascoli Piceno one of the most beautiful and well-used piazze in all of Italy, with lots of taste treats.

http://www.prenotazioni-online.info/...eno-piazza.jpg

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2523/...0771d49990.jpg

I hope you have this website for your Le Marche planning:

http://www.le-marche.com/

It is not easy to combine Urbino and Ascoli Piceno in one trip to le Marche, even with car, but both are marvelous. I think it can actually be easier to see Urbino as part of a trip that circles parts of Tuscany and Emilia-Romagna, and in a separate trip see Ascoli Piceno in combination with parts of Umbria, chiefly the Piano Grande above Norcia, and maybe a dip into Abruzzo to eat in Amatrice.

http://www.bianconi.com/english/well...ort_center.asp

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Amatrice.JPG







I hope you have this website for your planning.
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Jul 22nd, 2010, 07:22 PM
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Sorry for that garble at the end. I meant the Marche Voyager link, which I'd already included in the post.
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Jul 23rd, 2010, 01:53 AM
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BEWARE OF JELLYFISH - THEY ARE MORE DANGEROUS THAN THEY LOOK: (slightly tangential anecdotal jellyfish story to follow)
I was spending my last day in Stromboli many many years ago as a recent college grad, and was passing the time with three Italian gals, two of which were flirting mercilessly with me the better part of the morning. While out on a boat tour near Strombolicchio, swimming off the boat, one of the two was stung along her entire back and one side and leg by a giant jellyfish, even though there were not many around, and had to spend the rest of the day indoors, out of the sun, per Dr.'s rx.
Long story short, the other of the two (a young Venetian gal), without competition in the afternoon before my departure back to civilization (well, back to Milan, pretty close to civilized, for Italy), is now my wife.
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Jul 23rd, 2010, 03:34 AM
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Scary story--happy ending! Thanks!
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Jul 23rd, 2010, 04:34 AM
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ekscrunchy -- did you see the news feature this week about th 50 pound jellyfish in RYE, NEW HAMPSHIRE, of all places? About 100 stung/annoyed before it was corraled.

Is no place safe?
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Jul 23rd, 2010, 04:46 AM
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YES!!!! And the little kids were being stung by the tentacles that were thrashing around detached from the body!!

And I thought Gorgo was scary!!


http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/23/us...ml?_r=1&ref=us
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