Americans warned over arrival of Aussie jellyfish so big it can 'damage boats'

Josh Dutton
·News Reporter
·2-min read

Americans are being warned about the appearance of a number of large Australian jellyfish which have the ability to “damage boats”.

South Carolina Department of Natural Resources wrote on Facebook on Thursday people have found a number of Australian spotted jellyfish which “ain’t from around here”.

“These jellies can form large ‘blooms’ that gobble up fish and shellfish eggs, and damage boats and fishing gear,” the department wrote.

“Australian spotted jellies are occasionally sighted along the Atlantic coast, including a bloom in the Broad River in 2017. A member of the public recently saw this one in Murrells Inlet, and other recent sightings have been made in North Carolina.”

A spotted jellyfish is pictured in  South Carolina, USA.
The spotted jellyfish, an Australian species, has been spotted in South Carolina prompting a warning for people to beware. Source: South Carolina Department of Natural Resources

Residents are being asked to report sightings. The jellyfish can reach the size of a beach ball.

While the species isn’t harmful to humans, it is considered invasive to parts of the US.

According to the Australian Museum, the spotted jellyfish is commonly found around coastal NSW and Sydney Harbour.

It’s believed they may have latched onto boats to get to US waters. There are also less creatures in US waters capable of killing them.

On Facebook, a number of South Carolina residents marvelled at the sheer size of the jellyfish.

“I was on my paddle board two weeks ago in Garden City South Carolina and saw one,” one woman wrote.

“I thought it was a turtle at first as it was extremely large and colourful.”

Another woman wrote she saw one and estimated it to be about 40cm in diameter.

“Wait it's from Australia, is it deadly too?” one man wrote.

“That place scares me with all the deadly animals!”

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