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Sun, surf, stinging bluebottles: Tread carefully at Mumbai’s Girgaum Chowpatty

Mumbai city news: The bluebottles’ sting is poisonous and you may need to be hospitalised if you’ve been stung

mumbai Updated: Jul 02, 2017 16:42 IST
Badri Chatterjee
Badri Chatterjee
Hindustan Times
Mumbai city news,bluebottles,Girgaum Chowpatty
Municipal officials confirmed the presence of bluebottles at the northern end of the beach.(HT Photo)

Planning to enjoy the rains at Girgaum Chowpatty or take a dip in the sea? Beware, dead bluebottles — small jellyfish also known as Portuguese Man-of-War — washed ashore on Saturday. Visitors spotted around 30 of these creatures.

The marine organisms have a bubble-like body and a flute, with 20-cm-long tentacles. Touching one can deliver a sharp sting, with burning pain and welts, accompanied by muscle weakness.

What to do if you’ve been stung
  • Don’t panic.
  • Don’t touch or rub the affected area.
  • Wash the area with salt water as saline removes the tentacles.
  • Rinse the area with hot water, which will give you relief from the pain.
  • Don’t use vinegar.
  • Visit a doctor as soon as possible.

“Its sting is severe. It throws its tentacles at objects that are near it. That is what causes the sting. They primarily use tentacles to catch fish,” said Pradip Patade, marine conservationist from south Mumbai.

He added that the sting is poisonous and several people that were stung in the past needed to be hospitalised.

Municipal officials confirmed the presence of bluebottles at the northern end of the beach. “We will put up a board in the area to warn citizens,” Anand Waghralkar, deputy municipal commissioner, Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation.

“Normally, 15 or 20 days into the monsoon, strong winds wash the bluebottles ashore from the deep sea. It is advisable to avoid going into the sea now as the bluebottles float and are elusive,” said Patade.

First Published: Jul 02, 2017 16:38 IST