Killer Jellyfish Invasion!

box jellyfish– – Or so was how MonsterQuest described this episode…but somehow, a jellyfish attack lacks the “shock and awe” factor of say, a shark attack.  Still, it is a matter to be reckoned with, as the sting of a box jellyfish can kill in three minutes!

The box jellyfish featured is an apex predator feeding on shrimp and small fish; it kills swiftly with a potent cardiac venom that is said by victims to burn like acid when delivered by the creature’s tentacles.  Some experts feel that the box jellyfish may even target their prey, hunting and chasing fish.  The implication is that such jellyfish may possess a form of intelligence.  As the veteran of a college invertebrate zoology course, I feel that invertebrates deserve more attention and greater respect than they usually are accorded.

The global jellyfish population is rising, possibly due to global warming, which we ignore at our peril.  Jellyfish invasions, while they sound more gross than dire, have hit Spain, Ireland, and Japan, among other locations.  Deaths have resulted in some cases.

MonsterQuest searched Australian waters, and came up with a four foot Australian spotted jellyfish.  The creatures cannot be produced on demand, being subject to water salinity, temperatures, and storms.  I don’t have nightmares about them…but wouldn’t care to meet one of the big boys, either!

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2 Comments on “Killer Jellyfish Invasion!”

  1. Carycomic Says:

    I remember reading about these almost microscopic jellyfish called “sea wasps.” So named for the toxicity of their sting. In fact, just about the only animals immune to sea wasp venom are the sea turtles who prey on them!


    • vulpesffb Says:

      Even non-toxic jellyfish have a high gross-out rating for barefoot beach apes (humans)who fear stepping on them…the “Ewww!” factor…


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