Strange purple slime off Norway puzzles scientists
A strange phenomenon is puzzling scientists in Norway. For the first time, a purple slime has appeared in large quantities on the country's northern waters.
The substance, which has been described as similar to mucus or margarine in consistency, is believed to be the result of masses of jellyfish which are disintegrating.
Tone Falkenhaug, an oceanographer at Norway's Institute of Marine Research, told The Local, "It's probably dead or partially dead jellyfish. If you have dense blooms of jellyfish, they fall down into the water column and they start to disintegrate."
She also acknowledges, "We can't explain why it is like this, but it's not uncommon that jellyfish appear in very dense aggregations like this, especially deep in the fjord."
Reports about the slime began in August, and since then, scientists have estimated that the affected waters contain millions of cubic meters of the substance.
It continues to be a mystery for researchers and a major problem for fishermen who are struggling with equipment problems and coated fish.