Gulf hazard: Jellyfish bloom off Naples coast

A sea nettle, Chrysaora quinquecirrha, is a type of jellyfish found swimming near the Naples Pier in September 2010.

Photo by DAVID ALBERS // Buy this photo

A sea nettle, Chrysaora quinquecirrha, is a type of jellyfish found swimming near the Naples Pier in September 2010.

— The next time you step into the Gulf, be on the lookout for jellyfish lurking off the coast of Naples. Dozens of people have reported being stung within the last week.

At Lowdermilk Park in Naples on Wednesday morning, beachgoer Andrew Gorski and a handful of beachgoers had either seen jellyfish or had been stung by them, NBC2 reports.

"I thought maybe I was being bitten by a small fish or something," Gorski said.

The jellyfish bloom isn't isolated to Lowdermilk. There have been more than a dozen official reports of jellyfish encounters up and down Collier County beaches since the Fourth of July.

Most people refer to them as sea lice, but turns out that's a completely different creature. The current issue is being caused by jellyfish larva.

If stung, remedies include applying vinegar, an antihistamine or hydrocortisone.

Florida Department of Health report: http://www.doh.state.fl.us/environment/medicine/foodsurveillance/pdfs/Sea_Lice_or_Sea-Bather%27s_Eruption.pdf

Information on sea bather's eruption debunking the sea lice myth: http://www.diversalertnetwork.org/medical/articles/Debunking_the_Sea_Lice_Myth

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