UK rarity, the Crystal Jellyfish turns up in Cornwall

Check out these amazing photos of the rare Crystal Jellyfish (Aequoria sp.) taken by Claire Lewis of Cornwall Wildlife Trust in a rock pool on Looe Island.

Crystal jellyfish in a rock pool at Looe Island, Cornwall
Crystal Jellyfish, Photo by Claire Lewis. Looe Island.

Crystal Jellyfish are common in the northern Pacific Ocean but are rare in UK waters. These beautiful transparent creatures glow in the dark and can eat jellyfish bigger than themselves, but mostly feed on tiny marine animals called copepods. They sting their prey to catch them, but don’t worry, their sting isn’t usually powerful enough to cause more than redness and itching in humans.

Crystal jellyfish in a Cornish Rockpool. Looe Island.
Photo: Claire Lewis. Crystal Jellyfish on Looe Island


If you spot a Crystal Jellyfish on the beach or in the water, please do let me know. Try to take a photo and tell the Cornwall Wildlife Trust where and when you saw it.

Please note that Looe Island is a marine nature reserve and any visits must be booked through the Cornwall Wildlife Trust.

14 thoughts on “UK rarity, the Crystal Jellyfish turns up in Cornwall”

  1. Hi I found one of these in the sea at ness cove Shaldon near teinmouth today completely see through the only discernable mark was a ring on the center that made it look like there was a hole in it

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Adam, Yes, that does sound like a Crystal jelly. There are so many different jellyfish and medusae around this year – it’s fantastic. I’ll look out for crystal jellies around Cornwall – I haven’t seen one yet this year. Heathe


    1. That does sound like a Crystal jelly. Lovely! They do come in sometimes but I don’t often see them. If you’d like me to look at photo for you, get in touch through my contact page and I can give you an email to send it to. 🙂


    1. Hi Jade, There have been unusually large numbers of crystal jellies this year, along with the usual jellyfish. They’re lovely to watch but these medusa and their relatives, the jellyfish, all have stinging tentacles… so not great for swimmers. I’ve swum head-first into compass jellyfish a few times so I can sympathise!


  2. Feb 1st 2022 Saunton Sands, N Devon. Several crystal jellyfish found on low-tide strand-line this afternoon by members of Coastwise North Devon during a “Strand-Line Amble”. Never seen or heard of them before, but our leader, Dave Jenkins seemed familiar with them.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for sharing Paul. Crystal jellies seem to have become more frequent visitors in recent years. I mostly see them in the summer months, so February is less usual – although storms can bring them in any time of year. There have been lots of sightings of very small Portuguese man o’ war colonies too. Keep me posted if you spot anything else that’s unusual – it’s always good to hear what people are finding.


    1. Hi Rachael, That’s wonderful! Crystal jellies have been arriving in larger numbers in recent years and there are lots around this summer. They’re beautiful to watch. Thanks for sharing your sighting.


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