Sea saliva begins to threaten Black Sea coasts

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Recent findings have revealed that sea saliva, which is a thick jelly-like layer of slime that develops on the surface of the water and vividly seen in Turkey’s Marmara Sea over the past few months, is also threatening the marine biome of the Black Sea.

The layer of sea saliva formed due to the excessive growth of microorganisms resulting from industrial wastes dumped at the Samsun Port has reached worrying levels, causing alarm among the public and fishermen in the provinces in the Black Sea region.

Formed due to the excessive proliferation of microscopic plants called phytoplankton, sea saliva poses a hazard to biological life in the sea as they are unable to hunt.

Turkey’s fishing industry, as well as the tourism industry, has been dealing with a setback due to the accumulation of sea saliva on Turkish waters.

Özgür Baytut, a hydrobiologist of Ondokuz Mayıs University, pointed out that it is not natural the way sea saliva has been seen quite frequently lately.

Noting that sea saliva has been present in the Adriatic and Mediterranean since the 18th century and was mostly seen in the Marmara Sea 15 years ago, Baytut drew attention to the fact that the production of sea saliva has increased in recent years.

“Increasing pollution in recent years has caused sea saliva to become very frequent intensely. This is the anomalous side of the story,” he noted.

Pointing out that the increased mucus layer prevents the fish from breathing by blocking their gills, Baytut stated that sea saliva affects the marine species negatively.

The academic also stressed the necessity of preventing activities that would increase sea saliva production.

Hurriyet Daily News

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