A swimmer has been rushed to hospital after being bitten by a deadly blue-ringed octopus at a popular Australian beach.
The woman, aged in her 30s, was swimming at Sydney's Chinamans Beach in Mosman when she was bitten multiple times on the stomach by one of the world's most venomous marine creatures.
The incident occurred at around 2.45pm on Thursday when she picked up a shell in the water, not realising there was a small blue-ringed octopus inside. The cephalopods are usually between 4cm to 6cm in size.
The creature then "fell out and bit her twice on the stomach," NSW Ambulance Inspector Christian Holmes said in a statement.
Swimmer being monitored at Royal North Shore hospital
It understood that she is still receiving care in hospital and being monitored closely.
“The patient was experiencing some abdominal pain around the bite site so paramedics applied pressure and a cold compress before taking her to Royal North Shore hospital to be monitored and treated for further symptoms," Inspector Holmes said.
“A blue-ringed octopus bite is a rare call for us, but they are extremely venomous."
Venom 1000 times more powerful than cyanide
The venom of a blue-ringed octopus — called tetrodotoxin — is known to be 1,000 times more powerful than cyanide on humans.
Their bites are rare, seldom break the skin and are often undetected, yet have catastrophic effects so they should be avoided at all costs.
This is not the first time a blue-ringed octopus was spotted in the area, with one showing up at a rockpool at Edwards Beach in February 2021, ABC reports.
Deadly octopus spotted at another Sydney beach
The incident comes just weeks after another blue-ringed octopus was spotted mere metres away from kids playing in the water.
The creature was found within the netted area of Gunnamatta Bay near Cronulla, where dozens of children were taking part in nipper’s training.
A man managed to scoop the creature up in a child's sand bucket and release it into an area safely away from swimmers.
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