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BARRIER REEF AUSTRALIA Accommodation, Tours, Attractions & Interesting Facts About The Great Barrier Reef.

Great Barrier Reef
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Some Of the Dangers


Read an Interesting Interview with a Jellyfish and Marine Stinger expert

Find the Truths Dispel the Myths
  Great Barrier Reef - Box Jellyfish


Species - chironex fleckeri


Box Jellyfish are pale blue and transparent and bell or cubed shaped with four distinct sides, hence box jellyfish.
Measuring up to 20 cm along each side of the cube or bell, the Box Jellyfish  has up to as many as 15 tentacles on each corner which can be 3 metres in length with up to 5,000 nematocysts (stinging cells).
The Box Jellyfish shoots itself along up to speeds of 4 knots in a  jet-like motion.


The box jellyfish seem  to move  towards the shore in calm waters when  tide is rising and gather near the mouths of rivers, estrays and creeks following the rain. 

Box Jellyfish feed on  small fish and crustaceans. 


The Box Jellyfish season starts with the onset of the wet across the top of northern Australia,  usually around October and lasts until April. Further south along the northern Queensland or northern Western Australia coast the season is usually from November to March. They sometimes appear further south a few weeks beyond the  close of the season.


You have virtually no chance of surviving the venomous sting. The pain is so excruciating and overwhelming that you would most likely go into shock and drown before reaching the shore. So don't go swimming alone!

First Aid Never use methylated spirit or alcohol.  

Domestic vinegars should be poured liberally over the  tentacles to inactivate  stinging cells as soon as possible. The tentacles  may then be removed.  Artificial respiration and cardiac massage may be required.
Where antivenom  is unavailable, pressure-immobilisation  may be used on limbs after inactivation of stinging cells,  while the patient is being transported to the nearest medical centre.

More Information

For more information on Marine Stingers and Jelly Fish please read this Interesting Interview between Christina James of Cairns Holiday Specialists with Senior Marine Stinger Advisor Dr Lisa-ann Gershwin Curator from the Natural Sciences Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery in Launceston Tasmania Where they discuss the chances of being stung whilst swimming the Great Barrier Reef.


Box Jellyfish