WATCH OUT: There has been an unwelcome increase in jellyfish in the Wide Bay region.
WATCH OUT: There has been an unwelcome increase in jellyfish in the Wide Bay region. Nicholas Falconer

Jellyfish blown in by north-easterly winds

BEACHGOERS across the Wide Bay region have noticed an unwelcome increase in blubber and bluebottle jellyfish littering our coastal seashores.

Surf Life Saving Queensland regional manager Craig Holden said this summer more catostylus - or blue or jelly blubbers as they're more commonly known - were being spotted.

"We're not seeing a huge number of bluebottles," he said. "Some beaches are more affected than others. But Woodgate has the most blubbers, and all beaches have more than we've ever seen."

He said the reason for the huge rise in blubbers and bluebottles was the north-easterly breezes which were blowing them to shore.

Woodgate Beach Tourist Park manager Karen Martin said she had her fingers crossed the blubbers would start moving on.

"I had a girl a week ago - she had welts on the top of her leg. She was really distressed," she said.

"They're all over the beach at the moment, thousands of them. As the waves roll in you can see them among the waves. It's very sad for people who save to come here on their holiday. They get here and can't even enjoy the beach, it's very disappointing."

Mr Holden said at all beaches in Hervey Bay the blubbers were in plague proportions.

"They are reasonably harmless, but can give a small sting. It's more of an annoying itch than a sting," he said.

"In Bargara we've seeing lots more blubbers out to sea; we see them when we paddle out for training in the mornings."

He recommended people first rinsing the blubber sting with water, then applying ice or a cold pack to the affected area.

"For bluebottles, hot water is the best treatment," he said. "Take a hot shower. If you're at the beach and don't have access to one, go and see the life savers."

Jellyfish treatment

For blubber stings:

Apply ice or an ice pack to the affected area.

For bluebottle stings:

Seek assistance from surf lifesavers if possible.

Rinse the area with hot water, or take a hot shower.

If it is still stinging, apply ice.



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