A poisonous jellyfish-like creature has been making its way upon shore in the New Jersey region, and beachgoers are urged to exercise extreme caution when walking, especially when barefoot. This is something that ordinarily would not be an issue, but is largely attributed to warmer waters extending further north. This climate displace is happening. These Portuguese man o’ wars are looking for new places to call home, or are drifting more carefully along the coastline, and are washing up and being spotted in places where they traditionally wouldn’t be spotted.
According to experts, they are occasionally spotted, but never are they seen as frequently as they have been recently. The recent spotting are definitely an anomaly, and one that is a serious concern for those who experience the water and ocean in that particular region.
It appears as though this is going to be a continued problem though, as climate experts continue to worry about what might become of these spaces, where humans typically roam during holidays and the summer season. Paul Bologna of Montclair State University pointed out that, “They are definitely lots of them around,” which he added isn’t something that is seen “every summer.”
Bologna added that with these types of sightings it’s not unusual to see several more after the first one or two encounters. He said, “After the first one showed up, I was suspecting there’s a good possibility that we’re going to see a lot more.” While it isn’t something that can be perfectly predicted, it is something that has to be predicted to some degree.
Since there are tourists and locals in the region and constantly patrolling these regions, it’s important to note any odd anomalies that one might see. For those who see these colorful creatures, staying away from them is key, as they are poisonous and can be deadly. While there aren’t typically many deaths associated with them, it still is something that should be policed closely by individuals who are spending a lot of time at the water.
NOAA points out that the repercussions from encountering a Portuguese man o’ war can be painful. They note that, “Contact with its tentacles will result in a painful, intense sting, welting, and blistering.” This is why it’s important to be careful, and to note your surroundings at all times. While in the water, it’s most important to simply be careful, and to avoid regions where sightings have been, if avoidance is the number one concern.
Otherwise, simply be careful, and be prepared to seek medical attention immediately should you come into contact with one of these jellyfish.