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CAUTION - RARE TRANSPARENT “SEA WASPS” ARE STINGING PEOPLE IN THE NORTH SOUND

27 May 2019
CAUTION - RARE TRANSPARENT “SEA WASPS” ARE STINGING PEOPLE IN THE NORTH SOUND

The Department of Environment (DoE) received reports from a number of water sports operators of several individuals being stung by jellyfish in the North Sound on Monday, 27th May, at Stingray Sandbar and near the North Sound’s barrier reef. Two people were taken to hospital with injuries from the jellyfish stings Monday morning.

The DoE has tentatively identified the jellies causing the stings as ‘Sea Wasps’ (Carybdea alata), a small (2-3 inch) species that is nearly transparent. They are occasionally found off the coastal waters of Florida, Bahamas and other areas of the Caribbean. Sea Wasps are rare in Cayman. However, recent weather conditions may be responsible for bringing them into near-shore waters.

Anyone going to the Stingray Sandbar or near the barrier reef is asked to be cautious. These small jellies are not easy to see and can deliver a painful sting that leaves welts and redness if they contact bare skin. Home treatments can include pouring white vinegar on sting areas, however, if the victim’s reaction to the sting persists or becomes severe, it is advised to seek proper medical attention immediately.

A photo of a Sea Wasp is attached. These creatures typically tend to inhabit shallow water at night, like to float near coral reefs and are attracted by lights.