Thousands Treated for Bluebottle Stings in Australia

first_imgStay on target Alligators Spotted ‘Swimming’ in Road, Climbing Fences in FloridaBaby Dugong That Became Internet Star Dies After Ingesting Plastic Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water…Thousands of beachgoers in Australia were treated over the weekend for venomous bluebottle stings, according to Surf Life Saving Queensland.While folks in North America and Europe bundled up to ring in the new year, Aussies pulled on their bathing suits and flip-flops for a summer holiday. But instead of watching fireworks, many people were seeing blue.AdChoices广告Bluebottles—a.k.a. Portuguese Man O’ War (Physalia physalis), a.k.a. Indo-Pacific Man O’ War (Physalia utriculus), a.k.a. not a true jellyfish—is a marine hydrozoan found in the Indian and Pacific Oceans.center_img Been stung by a bluebottle (Physalia)? Ensure you remove the blue tentacle, rinse the area with sea water and seek help from a lifesaver or professional lifeguard. Treat the area with warm water or ice for 20 minutes. If symptoms persist, send for medical aid.— Surf Life Saving QLD (@lifesavingqld) December 28, 2018Propelled by currents, tides, and a sail at the top of its bladder, the slimy scummy creature boasts venomous tentacles that deliver a painful sting, powerful enough to kill fish or, occasionally, humans.The season’s first bluebottles were spotted across the Australia’s Gold Coast late last month, closing a handful of beaches just before the new year. More than 1,600 stinger treatments were recorded on Dec. 30 alone.As of Sunday evening, Surf Life Saving Queensland reported a “whopping” 3,592 bluebottle stings across the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast over the weekend. “Unusually strong wind conditions are causing bluebottles to come closer to shore,” the aquatic rescue authority tweeted on Saturday. “If stung, remove stingers, take a very hot shower, and apply ice.”Lifesavers are doing stinger drags from in Australia (via Surf Life Saving Queensland)Despite Australia’s total or partial beach closures, folks are still feeling the wrath of these bluebottles, the sting of which can lead to red welts on the skin, muscle cramps, elevated heart rates, and vomiting.On rare occasions, a bluebottle bite can be fatal to humans.In 1987, an unlucky victim suffered a full cardiovascular collapse that resulted in death after getting too close to a Portuguese Man O’ War in Florida. More recently, a woman swimming off a beach near Sardinia died following a bluebottle sting.More on Geek.com:Low-Light Camera Captures Rare Glimpse of Deep-Sea JellyfishJellyfish Chips and Seaweed Dip, Anyone?Watch: Couple Finds Deadly Snake in Bedroom Air Conditionerlast_img

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