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bathing report

There's been a rise in sightings of this dangerous jellyfish off Dublin

The increase coincides with a rise in temperatures this week.

18/08/2014. The most venomous jellyfish in Irish w Sasko Lazarov / Sasko Lazarov / /

A BATHING NOTICE put in place at beaches in south Dublin remains in place this afternoon, after a large number of lion’s mane jellyfish were spotted in recent days.

The species has been seen at various locations around the country, and there have been a number of warnings throughout August.

“Warning signs have been placed in Sandycove and the 40 Foot bathing area, warning swimmers of the presence of jellyfish in the water and washed up on the beach,” a warning from Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council said.

12 jellyfish were removed from the water at Sandycove on Saturday alone, according to the latest update from the Council.

“Bathers are advised not to enter the water due to the presence of these jellyfish whose sting can be dangerous and cause serious symptoms including nausea, vomiting and respiratory distress,” the authority’s public notice said.

Please note that there is no Lifeguard Service at Sandycove for the remainder of the bathing season.

A large number of the jellyfish were also spotted at the opposite end of the county at Balbriggan Beach, according to community website There were also sightings at nearby Skerries.

Lifeboat callout 

A woman suffering from a suspected jellyfish sting was rescued from Sherkin Island off the coast of Cork last week, after falling ill with respiratory problems believed to have been caused by anaphylactic shock.

And there have been sightings of the species elsewhere around the country, including off Co Galway.

While the larger variation of the jellyfish can be deadly,  the ones found in Irish waters are comparatively small, expert Pat Ó Suilleabhain of The National Sea Life Centre in Bray told us earlier this month.

“Our waters are much too warm for the larger versions. You could find some with a bell (body) of two metres and tentacles up to 60 metres. But the ones here are much smaller.”

The stings are quite painful. It can be irritating and blister and some people end up with muscle cramp.

While they are rare, respiratory and heart problems can happen in some cases, he said.

The jellyfish only have a lifespan of a year, but dead ones can still sting, so Ó Suilleabhain recommended staying well clear if you should see one washed up on a beach.

If you see one, swim away. The water is their natural habitat, not ours, but we’re much stronger swimmers.

fish1 BiteYourBum Photography BiteYourBum Photography

And if you happen to get stung:

“The first thing you should do is rinse the sting with sea water. Peeing on it does absolutely nothing.

Then, apply a dry cold pack to the area – like ice cubes in a plastic bag wrapped in a t-shirt. If it doesn’t improve, then seek medical help.

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