miércoles, junio 18, 2008

Los mares rebosan de medusas signo de su muerte


Es terrible, pero ante la intensa pesca industrial (de atunes hasta tiburones), las medusas se quedan sin quien se las coma, y como fantasmas que buscan adueñarse de un mundo que no es suyo empiezan a llenar todo el océano, invadiendolo sin que nada ofrezca resistencia. Copio de lo que dice en marzo Rigorous Intuition:

The Deep Ones

I could not but feel that some noxious marine mind had declared a war of extermination upon all the solid ground - HP Lovecraft, The Crawling Chaos

Narrating the IMAX documentary Deep Sea, Johnny Depp's first words are to assure us we're not watching science fiction, and the creatures are not from another planet. The creatures are jellyfish, and the assurance that this is our own world fails to comfort me. Their biomass now surpasses ocean vertebrates, and are found in staggering quantities where they have never been seen in number before, because we have sickened the waters with overfishing and the climate is trending towards conditions unseen since the Carboniferous Era.

Complexity is the product of cooling, a process observable on every order of scale. The world we recognize and of which we're a part is the product of a climate mild enough to encourage diversity and intricacy. Brainless and simple jellies thrive in warm waters, and catastrophic warming means devolution of the seas back into primordial soups. The new plague of jellies appears as a harbinger of the end of the world we know from out of the world we didn't: from out of Deep Time. From slime, back to slime.

Billions of luminescent mauve stingers, "in a dense pack of about 10 square miles and 35 feet deep," wiped out Northern Ireland's only salmon farm last November. "In 30 years, I've never seen anything like it," said Northern Salmon's Managing Director John Russell. "It was unprecedented, absolutely amazing. The sea was red with these jelly fish and there was nothing we could do about it, absolutely nothing." This is more than three months old and you may have already forgotten the report, but is there a rival to this horror in all of Lovecraft's fiction? More than three months on and I still can't shake it, and it's at least worthy of the signs and wonders of a blind idiot god.

Translucent, mutable and iridescent, 98% water and almost entirely not there, a jelly is perhaps as close to a phantom as a creature can be and yet still belong to the material realm. In this respect at least it transcends the material, and gives great metaphor for the ineffable and alien yet familiar Other. Which may partly account for why they're seen these days in even less likely places than off the coast of Ireland...."

Hoy Current News agrega más terrible evidencia lo que algo terrible sucediendo en el océano:

The dramatic proliferation of jellyfish in oceans around the world, driven by overfishing and climate change, is a sure sign of ecosystems out of kilter, warn experts.

"Jellyfish are an excellent bellwether for the environment," explains Jacqueline Goy, of the Oceanographic Institute of Paris. "The more jellyfish, the stronger the signal that something has changed."

Brainless creatures composed almost entirely of water, the primitive animals have quietly filled a vacuum created by the voracious human appetite for fish.

Dislodging them will be difficult, marine biologists say.

"Jellyfish have come to occupy the place of many other species," notes Ricardo Aguilar, research director for Oceana, a international conservation organisation....

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