Marine Stingers (Jellyfish)
There is an array of jellyfish (also called 'marine stingers') in Queensland's tropical waters.
Stingers are of particular concern in waters between November to May/June. In Tropical North Queensland, we call this period 'stinger season'
The most dangerous species that may be present in North Queensland waters during stinger season is one of the species of Box Jellyfish (Chironex fleckeri). It can cause fatalities.
There are also jellyfish commonly known as Irukandji Jellyfish. This name is used to encompass a group of jellyfish that can cause Irukandji Syndrome. Irukandji Syndrome is a painful reaction to a Irukandji sting and may require hospitalisation.
Many beaches have a bottle of household vinegar provided on the beach. If you are stung, pour vinegar on the sting and then seek medical attention.
Look for and observe warning signs. Don't swim when beaches are closed.
During stinger season many beaches in Tropical North Queensland have stinger-resistant enclosures (stinger nets) to help protect swimmers from jellyfish. Stinger nets afford a high degree of protection, however, they are stinger 'resistant' not stinger 'proof'. To avoid Irukandji stings check with the beach lifeguard / lifesaver.
Do not interfere with stinger nets or sit on floating pontoons. During stinger season it is advised to wear protective clothing (wet suit or lycra 'stinger suit') when swimming in the sea (beach and reef). Enter water slowly (Chironex Box Jellyfish will often swim away from people given the opportunity and time).
(The beaches in South East Queensland are free of stingers. )
Source : Health Queensland Gov.
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