June 1, 2011

Jellyfish Sting Again!



     I wondered why my post on a jellyfish that stung over one hundred people at my childhood beach, Wallis Sands Beach, in Rye, New Hampshire, had so many hits May 31. I checked to see if the post was being spammed, but it was not. That there were legitimate searches for jellyfish stings proved correct.

     Then I saw the post/article on the Internet: Jellyfish hordes crash Florida beach parties. More than eight hundred persons were stung by a jellyfish invasion at the beaches along Florida’s Atlantic coast. They were stung by the swarm of purple-colore sea creatures, which washed up on shore en masse thanks to consistent east winds. 

     Only two victims were transported to the hospital—they suffered respiratory problems. Others who were stung experienced itching, burning, and rashes, similar to a bee sting, The stings aren’t usually serious unless the stung party is allergic. Lifeguards have a vinegar solution on hand to neutralize the stinging cells.

     However, Thousands more, understandably spooked by the jellyfish, stayed out of the water.*


     The jellyfish striking the Florida beaches was a distinctive species of jellyfish was a mauve stinger, a species not indigenous to North America, and which is very sporadic, occurring in heavy numbers, but not appearing every year. The large population, probably bloomed in the Gulf of Mexico, was likely transported by the Gulf-stream wrapping around the coast of Florida. The species is much more common in the Mediterranean.**


     The articles explained the interest in stinging jellyfish which make their appearance on Atlantic Coast beaches.


**1,600 people along Florida coast stung by non-native jellyfish, From wire reports, Greensburg Tribune-Review, June 1, 2011, A5



Jellyfish Sting Wallis Sands Beach Visitors


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