Tag Archives: jellyfish

A Walk on the Beach in Boca

Thought I would share some wonderful images of the last beach walk I took in 2015 for all of those reminiscing about their holiday beach vacations.

I started at the South Beach Pavilion in Boca Raton, and walked north towards Red Reef Park. The beach in front of the pavilion is usually concentrated with people, and this day was no different. (This is a favorite spot for the FAU students.) Despite all of the people, I was able to capture so very relaxed gulls. I also saw man-o-war aplenty, so beware if you are swimming in the South Florida region!

I took all of these images with my phone. Enjoy!

The 7 Apps You Need to Download Before You Hit the Beach

Before you hit the sand and surf, hit the app store on your smart phone and download a few apps that will enhance your beach experience.

Check Out the Waters

magic seaweed itunes store download apple

Magic Seaweed

Magic Seaweed is a go-to web resource for any surf lover, and their easy to use app brings need to know info on the go. This app shows you real time wave heights and wind direction, helping you choose whether you are going to bring the paddle board or the surf board.

You can save and choose your favorite beach spots in the world if you sign up for an account, so you can compare and contrast the tides, charts, pictures, and other information.

If you need some saltwater surfspiration this app will truly give you that with tubular videos and other dynamic content.

Basic download is free, create an account to utilize more of the app’s features.

Download with Google Play

Download with iTunes

tides near me free app

Tides Near Me- Free

Tides Near Me- Free app is simple, easy to use, and straightforward.  Quickly select your location to see the last tide, the next tide, times for the sunrise and sunset, and times for the moonrise and moonset.

Tides Near Me also shows you the tidal forecast for the future week.

This app is free to download, but for $1.99 you can purchase an ad-free version.

Download with Google Play

Download with iTunes

Track Marinelife

ocearch global shark tracker

Ocearch Global Shark Tracker

This is a fun and exciting shark tracking tool! See if any of Ocearch’s tagged sharks are swimming near you!

Ocearch.org is a non-profit organization that provides nearly real-time information on large marine predators, such as Great White sharks and other shark species. Ocearch brings together some of the greatest research scientists throughout the world that collaborate to provide  information about these magnificent creatures. Greater understanding about the habits and behaviors of sharks will yield more successful conservation efforts.

Follow the travels of Katharine the Great White, or Pablo the Mako Shark. It is truly amazing to see the distance these shark travel. You never know where they will be!

This app is free to download.

Download with Google Play

Download with iTunes

 Participate in Citizen Science

jellywatch jellyfish spotting app

Jellywatch

This app is not only a great resource for learning about jellyfish, but it also allows you to record your own jellyfish sightings!

Walking on the beach and see a washed up jellyfish?  Snap a picture and upload information about your sighting. Snorkeling or diving a reef and run into some jellies? Record what you saw, so other beach goers can be aware of what is out there!

Even if you don’t plan on recording information, this app is crucial to having a safe day at the beach sans jellyfish stings.

Download with Google Play

Download with iTunes

marine debris tracker app responsible tourism

Marine Debris Tracker

This is one of our favorite apps, especially since we love responsible tourism. However, it only works if we contribute to it.

If you do a beach cleanup, or are just walking along the beach and discover any litter, bust out this app and record it.

Mark your location, and what you found. It is important to see if there are any litter trends, where debris is ending up, and what exactly is being left behind.

Download with Google Play

Download with iTunes

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IveGot1 Invasive Species Reporter

This is a very important app to have on your phone if you are traversing nature in Florida, whether on land or sea. Invasive species cost Floridians an estimated $500 million a year, which is nothing compared to the ecological problems that they create.

If you see an invasive species, such as a lion fish or ball python, record it in this app. This information will help to determine how advanced an infestation of an invasive species is, and hopefully help to remedy the issue and to protect indigenous species and ecosystems.

Download with Google Play

Download with iTunes

inaturalist record observations nature

iNaturalist

This is a great way to record any nature you want- plants, mammals, insects- whatever you see!

This fun app is a social network of other likeminded nature lovers that record their observations. Peruse guides, such as the Caribbean Coral Reef Food Web, or find your location on the map to see what has been spotted near you!

Download with Google Play

Download with iTunes

Did we miss an app that you think is a must-have for any beach goer? Contact us and let us know what we should download next!

Jellyfish: What to Do if You Get Stung

Pictured above are the stunning moon jellyfish, one of the most common jellyfish species in our oceans. Most of the time, these jellyfish won’t sting humans, but there are plenty of jellyfish who will if they feel threatened.

If you are going to swim in the ocean, it is important to know how to handle a jellyfish sting in order to minimize the discomfort and maximize calmness.

Step One: Remove the nematocysts (venomous stingers). Do this by first washing away any tentacles still stuck to you with salt water. Do not use fresh water.

The Mayo Clinic recommends that you use credit cards to brush off any nematocysts still stuck in your skin. If you use your fingers, you may get stung, and if you use any fabric, you may release more venom.

Step Two: Deactivate Nematocysts. You have two options that the Mayo Clinic recommends for this.

1) Rinse the affected area with generous amounts of vinegar for 30 seconds.

2) Mix salt water and baking soda to create a paste to apply to the affected area. (This is recommended for Portuguese Man-O-War and Sea Nettle stings.)

Step Three: Soothe the pain. Calamine lotion or other anti-itch lotions will soothe the irritation. Physicians are still debating whether or not warm water or cool water is the best way to soak your sting. Talk to a doctor to find out the best way to deal with your discomfort.

 

Jellyfish stings can range in severity. It can take anywhere from a few weeks or even a few months for a jellyfish sting to go away completely.

A “standard” jellyfish sting will include immediate burning pain, marks on the skin that will show where the tentacle came into contact (can be purplish, red, or brown), itching, tingling, numbness, radiating throbbing pain.

Severe jellyfish stings require immediate medical attention, especially if the person was stung all over. Reactions to jellyfish stings can occur immediately or over the course of a few hours.

Severe symptoms include nausea, vomiting, headache, muscle spasms, weakness, dizziness, fever, loss of consciousness, irregular heartbeat, and more.*

 

Jellyfish are common, but most of the time they are content going on about their jellyfish lives and not stinging you. If you do come in to contact with one, do not panic! Stay calm, and retreat to shore if you can.

Most beaches will have a conditions chart where the lifeguard will write the daily sea conditions. (This can be found either on the lifeguard stand, or at the entrance to the beach.) This will usually include if there are any sea pests or dangerous marine life in the area. Always check this before you continue on to the beach!

If the beach you are going to does not have a conditions chart, exercise even greater caution.

If you are fascinated by jellyfish, or if you want to know which jellies have been spotted in your area, then check out JellyWatch. This excellent organization provides information on jellyfish sightings throughout the world. You can even add your own jellyfish sighting if you want!

Don’t fear the jelly!

 

*Information provided thanks to the research and expertise of the Mayo Clinic. The Beach Review is not written by a medical physician, and should not be used as a substitute to professional medical advice. Seek a medical professional if you or someone else is experiencing a severe jellyfish reaction.