Florida Beaches Invaded By Portuguese Men-of-War

Warm waters around Florida have resulted in a growth of the population of Portuguese Man-of-War, or should that be Portuguese Men-of-War, an organism commonly confused with jellyfish (because they look just like jellyfish).

The PMOWs have a sting, roughly equivalent in pain level to a bee sting, and best treated at such. Do not urinate on your PMOW sting (save your urine for an actual jellyfish sting).

There are reports of many PMOWs washing up, with numerous swimmers suffering stings. The stinging tentacles, even after they fall off, are a hazard, and barefoot beachcombers can accidentally step on them. Many Florida beaches have warnings in effect.

Sea Surface temperatures in florida are high:

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And relatively high compared to historical data (images from Google Map with Climate Reanalyzer overlays):

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Photograph above by Julia Laden, taken this morning.

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I read that Man-of-war fish have stinging cells that are still active and capable of stinging even after the creature is dead. Makes these things dangerous even after they wash up on shore.

By Sandy Saltwater (not verified) on 11 May 2017 #permalink