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Thread: Watch Out! They're Back!

  1. #1
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    Yes folks, our old friend, the box jellyfish is back. Hundreds of them were found in the waterways around the western Cape York Peninsula town of Weipa. The creatures were huge, box jellyfish are sexually mature at 15cms, these were 20cms. They are found in coastal waters, so if you must swim, swim fast, then you only have the sharks and crocs to worry about.



    Box Jellyfish
    Species - Chironex Fleckeri


    Description

    Box Jellyfish are pale blue and transparent and bell or cubed shaped with four distinct sides, hence box jellyfish.
    Measuring up to 20 cm along each side of the cube or bell, the Box Jellyfish has up to as many as 15 tentacles on each corner which can be 3 metres in length with up to 5,000 nematocysts (stinging cells).
    The Box Jellyfish shoots itself along up to speeds of 4 knots in a jet-like motion.

    Habitat

    The box jellyfish seem to move towards the shore in calm waters when tide is rising and gather near the mouths of rivers, estrays and creeks following the rain.

    Box Jellyfish feed on small fish and crustaceans.

    Season

    The Box Jellyfish season starts with the onset of the wet across the top of northern Australia, usually around October and lasts until April. Further south along the northern Queensland or northern Western Australia coast the season is usually from November to March. They sometimes appear further south a few weeks beyond the close of the season.

    Venom

    You have virtually no chance of surviving the venomous sting. The pain is so excruciating and overwhelming that you would most likely go into shock and drown before reaching the shore. So don't go swimming alone!

    First Aid Never use methylated spirit or alcohol.

    Domestic vinegars should be poured liberally over the tentacles to inactivate stinging cells as soon as possible. The tentacles may then be removed. Artificial respiration and cardiac massage may be required.
    Where antivenom is unavailable, pressure-immobilisation may be used on limbs after inactivation of stinging cells, while the patient is being transported to the nearest medical centre.



  2. Lounge   -   #2
    Octopussy
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    pfff my species eat them for snacks

  3. Lounge   -   #3
    Originally posted by Octopussy@9 November 2003 - 15:57
    pfff my species eat them for snacks
    What species is that?

    chocolate starfish?

  4. Lounge   -   #4
    Octopussy
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    octopussay

  5. Lounge   -   #5
    Keikan's Avatar ........
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    Why don't you just not go in the water
    Ohh noo!!! I make dribbles!!!

  6. Lounge   -   #6
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    Originally posted by Keikan@9 November 2003 - 17:17
    Why don't you just not go in the water
    Cos it's summer.

    Actually, all our beaches have stinger nets, so as long as you stay in the enclosures you should be OK, no-one has died whilst swimming inside the nets.

    Stinger precautions, Cairns beaches.



  7. Lounge   -   #7
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    BTW,this does not effect swimming and diving on the reef as the jellyfish stick to the shore.



  8. Lounge   -   #8
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    I got nailed by one of these little buggers while skin diving in the Bahamas many years ago. My foot swelled up like a balloon...very painful. Thankfully, they weren't as dangerous as those bad boys you have over there BD.


  9. Lounge   -   #9
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    If I'm not mistaken Riddler, that looks like a bluebottle. This jellyfish can kill people with certain allergies.

    We have another jellyfish in these parts that is causing concern, mainly because of it's size, that's the "Irukandji". They are very small, only 1cm across, and are getting into our stinger nets. Last summer, these jellyfish killed three tourists in Far North Queensland.

    Actual size. (on my monitor anyway)


    Toxic shock from stinger family
    Tuesday, 15 October 2002

    Up to eight species of small, almost invisible box jellyfish cause Irukandji Syndrome and there is no antivenom for their potentially fatal stings.

    Dr Peter Fenner, Associate Professor at the James Cook University School of Medicine, and Mr John Hadok, of the Emergency Department at Mackay Base Hospital, have documented the first reported death from Irukandji Syndrome in the in The Medical Journal of Australia.
    "More than 100 people are likely to be stung and visit hospital this summer. Tragically this year, for the first time, there were two fatalities from Irukandji Syndrome in North Queensland", said Dr Fenner.

    Two middle-aged men were killed by jellyfish stings earlier this year, in separate incidents near Port Douglas and in the Whitsunday Islands.

    Dr Fenner believes that the jellyfish responsible for the deaths is an undescribed species of Irukandji that lives around the outer reefs and the Whitsunday Islands of the Great Barrier Reef.




  10. Lounge   -   #10
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    Could be BD, the guy at the Hotel clinic said they usually experienced Man-O-War migrations around that time of year. All I know is, there were thousands of them all of a sudden when just a half an hour before there was none ! It was freaky in any case.

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