Today’s FOTD involves a short story.
A few years ago, I was stung by a jellyfish while taking my first surfing lesson in Australia. It hurt so much that I could hardly walk! We kept a close watch on my breathing while I was rushed to a pharmacy to get ice and some truly magical anti-sting medication. (Thank goodness for that stuff!) After looking at my swollen and scarred legs, my instructor guessed that though I never saw my attacker, it was likely a young box jellyfish.
Adult box jellyfish are some of the most venomous creatures out there so I was lucky that I only got mild stings from one that was not yet fully matured. Box jellies are almost invisible in the water because they are blue-tinted and mostly transparent. Plus, their many stinging tentacles can reach lengths of 10 feet.
Now here is where it can get a bit tricky: box jellies aren’t exactly true jellyfish. As their name suggests, they are cube-shaped, rather than other jellies, which have a more rounded shape, similar to that of a mushroom cap.
Also, box jellies have the ability to propel themselves through the water, while regular jellyfish simply flow with the currents around them.
Have you ever been stung by a jellyfish? Tell us your stories!
- Dolphins and Whales Squeal like Children When They’re Happy, Study Says Posted Thu, August 21, 2014
- Seaweed Spotlight: A Rare Glimpse into Beautiful Ocean Kelp Forests (Photos) Posted Mon, August 25, 2014
- Ocean Roundup: Rare Blue Lobster Caught in Maine, Cephalopod Skin Providing Groundwork for New Technology, and More Posted Wed, August 27, 2014
- Ocean Roundup: Vaquita Porpoise Needs Swift Protection, Atlantic Ocean behind Global Warming Slow Down, and More Posted Fri, August 22, 2014
- Oceana Magazine: Tuna in Trouble Posted Mon, August 25, 2014