Jellyfish Reproduction Facts and Information
The lifestyle for any species of Jellyfish changes frequently. Some of the stages are quick and others can last for a year or longer. The fact that they don’t just become Jellyfish is something to take a good look at. First, all of the Jellyfish are either male or female but both of them can create eggs and sperm. With that in mind, it doesn’t take two of them to create offspring. They can create new life asexually.
Since mating for the Jellyfish can occur all year long there will be those are various stages in the lifecycle at any given point in time. Many people fail to realize that some of the tiny elements they see in the water of the ocean are really other lifecycle formations of the Jellyfish. The summer is the time when most of them will be placing eggs into the water for fertilization though. The hotter temperatures combined with more food available are prime conditions for creating offspring.
Once the egg and sperm have met there will be larvae formed. They will form on the tentacles of the adult Jellyfish. Then they will detach and float around in the water. They can be hard to identify though if you don’t really know what you are looking for. They are oval in shape to help them with movement. They will continue to float in the water until they find something they can attach to.
Once they make that attachment they move into the next part of the Jellyfish lifecycle. This is called the polyp stage. That is when they will develop the solid parts of their bodies. For example the formation of the mouth and then the tentacles. They will need those sticky tentacles to capture prey. Once they capture prey they will put it into their mouth.
The polyp stage can be one that lasts for a year or longer in the lifecycle of the Jellyfish. They will continue to develop new polyps that form from a centralized core known as the trunk. There are very small feeding tubes that allow each of the polyps in that group to be able to get adequate amounts of nutrients.
As that group of polyps reaches maturity though then there will be grooves that are created across the length of them. As they start to detach from the colony they will become Jellyfish that can freely move around. They will rely on the ocean current and the wind to help them move horizontally. Larger species of Jellyfish though will have the ability to move vertically under their own control as well.
There are two distinct stages. The first is the polypoid stage where they take the form of a small entity with tentacles to feed with. They tend to float around in the water with no real control over their movements. The influence of the ocean current and the wind carries them around.
The second stage of the Jellyfish lifestyle is when there is the reproduction of the offspring. Since each Jellyfish can create both eggs and sperm it isn’t always required for there to be both genders involved in the process of creating offspring. After the young are created they will soon start to create their bell shape that allows them to have some control over their movements in the water.
Due to these various lifestyle for the Jellyfish they are certainly interesting to watch. You can go online or see in books the various stages of the lifecycle for any given species. Being able to see them in such different physical appearances can really give you a new perspective on the life of a Jellyfish from start to finish.