Journal Issue Volume 29 Issue 2 Harmful Jellyfishes are Manageable

Policy Brief

Harmful Jellyfishes are Manageable

ORCID logo ORCID logo Wilfredo Y. Licuanan2,3, Julia Louise Ang2 , ORCID logo Berlin de los Santos Jr.1, ORCID logo Ephrime B. Metillo4

1Department of Natural Sciences, College of Science and Engineering, Ateneo de Naga University, Ateneo Avenue, Bagumbayan Sur, Naga City 4400
2Br. Alfred Shields FSC Ocean Research Center, De La Salle University, 2401 Taft Avenue Manila 0922
3Biology Department, College of Science, De La Salle University, 2401 Taft Avenue Manila 0922
4Department of Marine Science, Mindanao State University-Iligan Institute of Technology, Andres Bonifacio Ave., Tibanga, Iligan City 9200

Page 209-216 | Received 10 Dec 2021, Accepted 02 Jun 2022

Key Points

  • Very little is known about harmful jellyfish species in the Philippines, much less about their impacts on society (e.g., fishing and tourism sectors, local community).
  • The Department of Agriculture - Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (DA-BFAR), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Departments of Health (DOH) and Tourism (DOT) together with the Department of Science and Technology – Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (DOST-PCAARRD), other research institutions and academe, should conduct more research related to harmful jellyfish species to address the paucity in information.
  • To reduce injuries and deaths resulting from harmful jellyfish envenomation, DA, DENR, DOH, and DOT, and their counterparts in local governments must strengthen their information and education campaigns, preventive measures, emergency response, and treatment of jellyfish-related injuries and stings.
  • DA-BFAR should monitor box and other harmful jellyfishes in collaboration with the local governments with high coastal tourism traffic. This monitoring should be made participatory in high tourism-traffic areas, involving members of the public, the fisheries, tourism, and health sectors of the local governments in coordination with local academic institutions.
  • DA-BFAR and DENR should also maintain a publicly available database of jellyfish envenomation dates, times, and locations. Health workers and law enforcement officials should be taught to recognize the stings and record casualties for the DA-BFAR and DENR databases. This database and monitoring could be the basis for a national risk map and calendar and, eventually, an advisory and warning system.

Keywords: box jellyfish, envenomation, mortality, prevention