Mole Audace and the Medusa March 28, 2014
Opposite the Piazza Unita is a long pier called the Mole Audace. It was built in the second half of the 18th century but its name dates back to November 3, 1918 the Italian Bersaglieri, a high-mobility light infantry, landed in Trieste. The name marks the end of the first world and the end of the rule of the Austrian Hungarian Empire over Trieste. The Audace was the name of that first Italian war ship to arrive in port in Trieste carrying the Bersaglieri. The name means Daring and the pier protrudes daringly into the gulf. Today people strool the pier to get a breath of fresh sea air and on a clear day you can see the snow capped Carnic Alps. Today was a nice and warm, and the end of two days of bora.
The waters off the pier were full of jelly fish – Medusa in Italian. They look like transparent bubbles suspended in the water making the water color almost violet. Then there are larger cream colored ones shaped like mushroom caps with tentacles 3-6 feet long, trailing behind.
I saw in the paper that there are two types of jellyfish. The big one is known locally as “Botta marina’ and the scientifically as Rhizoztoma Pulmo. The smaller purple ones are Aurelia aurita. There were all kinds of different sizes of the purple ones which makes the experts think that the area is also a breeding ground. Apparently this phenomena is caused by the current bringing in the jellyfish and the mild temperature of the water (14C). Apparently the jelly fish are not dangerous (“nulla urticante” as described in the paper).