North West Wales

Jellyfish numbers on Anglesey soars after warm weather

Lion's mane
Image caption Lion's Mane jellyfish can stretch to over two metres and can deliver a powerful sting

The jellyfish population in north Wales has soared after the recent warm weather, researchers have said.

In the last three weeks, blooms have appeared along the shoreline on Anglesey and there have been some reports of children being stung.

The cold spring meant there were few reports of jellyfish before June.

Frankie Hobrow from the Anglesey Sea Zoo advised swimmers to "look but don't touch" and to treat stings with vinegar.

The Marine Conservation Society (MCS) said jellyfish, including the Lion's Mane variety, have been seen by holidaymakers at Benllech beach, on the Menai Strait.

Ms Hobrow said: "They have increased over the last two or three weeks with the warmer weather. They get carried around on the ocean currents, they can't swim very well so they rely on being carried around, and we do see this every year once it gets warmer.

"The sea temperatures warm up slightly and we get a lot more swarms of jellyfish."

'Very, very big'

Ms Hobrow said the Lion's Mane gives a "nasty sting".

She said: "They can grow very, very big - over two metres - but the ones here are fairly small.

"They can be painful but it's generally localised pain - it doesn't usually last very long. You can often help if you apply vinegar - that's great because it's acidic."

She also said urine could also be used because of its acidity.

The MCS's National Jellyfish Survey, which is in its 10th year, said 7,500 jellyfish reports have been made by the public over the last decade.

Dr Peter Richardson, the charity's biodiversity programme manager, said: "The scarcity of jellyfish reports before June was unusual and could well be linked to the exceptionally cold spring.

"However, as our waters warmed, sightings of jellyfish increased, with moon jellyfish reported in large numbers around the UK, reports of compass and blue jellyfish in the south west, and blooms of Lion's Mane jellies around north Wales and north west England."

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