South Padre Island experiencing increase in jellyfish and stingrays

Local News

Credit: Cameron County Beach Patrol

SOUTH PADRE ISLAND, Texas (KVEO)- South Padre Island is seeing an influx in jellyfish and stingrays.

According to UTRGV Research Associate, Mario Molina, the increase in these two aquatic animals along the coast are common around this time of year.

Although stingrays are not seen as often as jellyfish, there are a couple of ways to protect yourself if you happen to come in close contact with either.

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The first being that if you encounter a stingray to utilize the “stingray shuffle.” By shuffling your feet back and forth underwater, this will let the stingray know you are nearby and it will swim away.

The other way you can protect yourself is by being on the lookout for a blue flag on the beach. The color-coated flag indicates there are venomous jellyfish in the water.

“Both of these methods are not 100%,” said Molina. “But can really help prevent a lot of the injuries from occurring.”

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Molina also said that the intensity of the jellyfish will vary based on the temperature of the water.

If you happen to get stung, products with high salt concentration will lessen the pain of the sting.

These products include, but are not limited to: mustard, vinegar, and meat tenderizer.

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“If you do get stung…it’ll sting for 20-30 minutes,” said Trevor Williams, a SPI Lifeguard.

According to Molina, the jellyfish and stingrays are expected to stay in SPI until the end of summer.

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