Lifeguards warn beach-goers of a potential life threat. Discovery of a purple marine fish called Portuguese man o’war on the beaches of Long Island Beach New Jersey, this Sunday has caused a frenzy.
Lifeguard, Captain Randy Townsend, discovered this noxious species in the sand early Sunday morning. Last spotted 17 years ago on the same beach its return has been l inked to the extra ordinary warm waters experienced this year.
The National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration have confirmed that this species is highly toxic and packs ‘an intense sting’.
Beach-goers have taken the warning very seriously and are constantly on the lookout for things in the water.
The stinging, venom-filled tentacles of the Portuguese man o’ war can paralyze its prey.
Life guards have been warned that dead specimens (including those that wash up on shore) can sting just as painfully as the live organism in the water and may remain potent for hours or even days after the death of the organism or the detachment of the tentacle.
Stings usually cause severe pain to humans, leaving whip-like, red welts on the skin that normally last two or three days after the initial sting, though the pain should subside after about an hour. However, the venom can travel to the lymph nodes and may cause, depending on the amount of venom, a more intense pain. A sting may lead to an allergic reaction. There can also be serious effects, including fever, shock, and interference with heart and lung function. Stings may also cause death, although this is extremely rare. Medical attention may be necessary, especially if pain persists or is intense, the reaction is extreme, the rash worsens, a feeling of overall illness develops, a red streak develops between swollen lymph nodes and the sting, or either area becomes red, warm, and tender, sourced by National Geographic.
If stung immediately remove the tentacles from your skin and apply salt water to the affected area.