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Beachgoers are advised of poisonous jellyfish on Terengganu beaches

Beachgoers in Terengganu have been advised to be careful following the discovery of the poisonous jellyfish known as Portuguese man o’ war (Physalia physalis) at Pantai Kelulut and Pantai Pulau Kerengga in Marang near here.

Terengganu fisheries department director Ruzaidi Mamat said checks by his staff at the two beaches this morning found four of the jellyfish.

“There may still be other jellyfish along the coast and monitoring is under way. Visitors are advised to immediately report to the department if they come across this jellyfish.

“Even though the jellyfish is found dead, people are advised not to touch the carcass as it is still poisonous and very dangerous.

“If stung, immediately go to a nearby clinic or hospital for treatment,” he said in a statement today.

The current phase of the Northeast Monsoon season is one of the factors for the jellyfish to be beached along the east coast.

The last time this poisonous species was seen in the waters of Terengganu was in February 2020.

Ruzaidi said previous studies had recorded the discovery of more than 1,000 of this jellyfish floating in the waters of the Indian Ocean and they moved by drifting according to the currents or wind.

“To avoid threats on the surface, it can deflate its airbag and sink for a while.

“The average tentacle length of this species can reach over 10m long and is covered by poison-filled ‘nematocysts’ used to paralyse and kill fish and other small creatures.

“If there is contact with humans, the sting is very painful.

“Fatal cases are very rare but one still needs to be careful. Jellyfish that are dead and washed ashore can also cause stings if touched,” he said.

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