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Warning over giant jellyfish

The Marine Conservation Society is warning that warm weather in the south west could bring an influx of giant jellyfish to our coasts. A number of giant barrel jellyfish have already been washed up at Portland and Weymouth.

The species is harmless but the MCS says it's keen to hear from anyone who finds them.

The MCS says it's keen to hear from anyone who finds them. Credit: ITV News West Country

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  1. West Country (E)

Full report: Jellyfish numbers on the rise

If you've taken a trip to the seaside over recent weeks then you may have noticed jellyfish washed up on the shoreline or in rockpools.

According to the Marine Conservation Society, the creatures have been arriving in ever increasing numbers - and it could be the recent hot weather that's to blame.

Our Environment Correspondent Duncan Sleightholme reports:

Salt water or vinegar. Not urine!

An old wives' tale which suggests using urine to treat jellyfish stings has been challenged by the British Red Cross.

The charity instead suggests people treat such stings with salt water or vinegar.

A sting from a jellyfish can be extremely painful, but trying to treat it with urine isn't going to make your day any better. Urine just doesn't have the right chemical make-up to solve the problem.

If people have been stung, they need to get out of the water to avoid getting stung again. Once out, slowly pouring seawater over the sting will help ease the pain.

Doing the same thing with vinegar can be even more effective as the acid helps neutralise the jellyfish sting. But, unless you're near a chip shop, seawater will probably be easier to find."

– Joe Mulligan, Head of First Aid, British Red Cross
  1. West Country (E)

Jellyfish numbers surge amid warm weather

Warm weather sees boom in UK jellyfish blooms Credit: Blue Reef Aquarium/PA Wire

Jellyfish blooms are on the rise following recent warm weather after the cold spring delayed their appearance, marine experts have said. Compass and blue jellyfish have been spotted in the South West.

The Marine Conservation Society (MCS) is urging people to report their sightings of jellyfish, which act as a barometer of the seas, as part of its annual national jellyfish survey.

This year they had been a rare sight in UK seas until hot weather warmed coastal waters in recent weeks. But increasing numbers of moon, compass, blue and lion's mane jellyfish have been reported.