PUBLISHED: 09:55 19 August 2008 | UPDATED: 11:01 17 June 2010
BEACHGOERS are being warned of stinging Man o War jellyfish washing up along the South Devon coast. They have been spotted along England s South West coast from Cornwall to Lyme Regis and although sightings are quite rare - only 20 around English shores
BEACHGOERS are being warned of stinging Man o'War jellyfish washing up along the South Devon coast.
They have been spotted along England's South West coast from Cornwall to Lyme Regis and although sightings are quite rare - only 20 around English shores in the past two years- people are being urged to take greater care when entering coastal waters.
However, the Marine Conservation Society (MCS) are insisting that there is no need to panic.
Richard Harrington, communications manager of the MCS, said: "They do give a nasty sting and it brings on a reaction to the skin which is quite painful.
"If you do get stung do not panic but seek medical advice straight away. Local GPs or health care officials will have the necessary remedies to relieve the pain."
Man o'War stings are particularly dangerous as the venom they expel can cause excruciating pain and in a handful of incidents have resulted in human fatalities.
Mr Harrington added: "It is very rare that humans have died from Man o'War stings and none have been recorded in Britain."
The jellyfish appear to be floating polythene bags and are a vivid purple and blue colour.
The MCS are encouraging people to report any sightings of Man o'War or other jellyfish by taking part in an online survey at www.mcsuk.org.