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Smartphone apps launched to report alien fish and jellyfish

The Redcoat (Sargocentron rubrum) (above) and the Australian spotted jellyfish (Phyllorhiza punctata), two non-indigenous fish and jellyfish species found in Maltese waters that are featured in the Spot the Alien Fish and the Spot the Jellyfish smartphone apps.

The Redcoat (Sargocentron rubrum) (above) and the Australian spotted jellyfish (Phyllorhiza punctata), two non-indigenous fish and jellyfish species found in Maltese waters that are featured in the Spot the Alien Fish and the Spot the Jellyfish smartphone apps.

Smartphone apps were recently launched for the Spot the Jellyfish and the Spot the Alien Fish campaigns. The apps take these two citizen science campaigns to a new level by allowing users to report sightings of jellyfish and of alien (non-indigenous) fish in local waters, as well as to view information on specific species and background information on the campaigns.

The apps were developed by students from the Malta College of Arts, Science and Technology (Mcast) as part of their final year projects, and in collaboration with Prof. Alan Deidun from the University of Malta’s Department of Geosciences, who coordinates the campaigns.

The first version of the apps are already available on the Google Play platform and will be available on the iTunes platform in the coming weeks after clearance from Apple. The final version of the apps are expected to be released in the coming weeks after they are fine-tuned by the developers.

More campaign initiatives are planned for the coming months, including the publication of a manual on alien fish species found in Maltese waters.

The campaigns are funded by the International Ocean Institute (IOI), the Malta Tourism Authority (MTA) and the Environment and Resources Authority (ERA).

The public may also send in their jellyfish and alien fish reports through the campaign websites below, via social media pages or by e-mail aliensmalta@gmail.com.

www.ioikids.net/jellyfish

www.aliensmalta.eu

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