Dangerous giant jellyfish spotted in Irish waters will be taken out by the tide next week
The numbers of dangerous Lion’s Mane jellyfish present in waters along Ireland’s east coast will reduce by next week, an Irish Water Safety spokesperson has said.
The dangerous creatures, which give a particularly nasty sting and can send swimmers into analphylatic shock, descended on the east’s seaside hotspots this week after they were brought in by the spring tide.
The giant jellyfish have been pictured in Templetown and Bettystown this week, and Irish Water Safety has urged swimmers to beware of the creatures until the tide takes the majority of them out to sea by next Tuesday.
John Leech of Irish Water Safety said: “The tide will slowly recede from today until next Tuesday when we will have neap tides. So we will still have strong rip currents until about Friday or Saturday.”
“The number of jellyfish in the water should ease off when the tide goes out again, there will be fewer of them,” he said.
Although the numbers of Lion’s Mane jellyfish in the water will reduce by Tuesday, the water safety expert said swimmers should still be prepared for a run-in with a hanger-on, as their stings are particularly painful and can be the cause for a trip to A&E.
"Everyone who is swimming this week in beaches along the East coast should be conscious of these Lion’s Mane jellyfish, which have been brought in with the spring tide in their numbers,” he said.
“They have the potential to cause an anaphylactic reaction in someone who is stung, if they should be allergic, but much like a bee sting, you don’t know until you’ve been stung.
“We have seen a number of people hospitalised from this jellyfish and its sting is quite painful and different to other jellyfish found in Irish waters.
“The sting from their tentacles may last for days after they have died,” he said.
The Lion’s Mane jellyfish can have a diameter of up to 2 metres and has more than 150 tentacles. The creatures range in colour from deep red to yellow.
Swimmers in Galway and Mayo need not think they are totally safe from a nasty sting from a Lion’s Mane either, as they have also been spotted on the West coast, albeit in much smaller numbers.
Meanwhile, the Irish Water Safety spokesperson also revealed that peeing on a jellyfish sting is an old wives’ tale and will not alleviate the pain.
“If you get stung, you need to wash it with salt water and remove the tentacles as soon as you can. Place a dry cold pack against it. As with anything, if the pain does not die down or the sting appears particularly bad, seek medical attention and go to A&E,” he said.