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Box jellyfish collection at Nam Bor Bay, on Phuket's east coast

Phuket Jellyfish Alerts Campaign Underway

Monday, January 5, 2009
AN AWARENESS campaign is to begin in the Phuket region to alert and educate coastal resort staff, tour companies and residents about box jellyfish and other marine stingers.

A seminar is set to be held on Phuket in February to review progress and plan for the probability that numbers of jellyfish in local waters are growing, in line with a worldwide trend.

The Phuket office of the Tourism and Sports Ministry now has responsibility for helping resorts and tour operators to provide information.

A three-pronged campaign to deal with the potential menace of the box jellyfish was conceived and approved at a conference in Bangkok on December 18.

As with the Bangkok conference, the Phuket seminar will be organised by the Bureau of Epidemiology, Ministry of Public Health.

The bureau will have responsibility for compiling accurate statistics from clinics and hospitals around the Andaman region so that the incidence of stings can be assessed and patterns of change charted.

Meanwhile, the Phuket Marine Biology Centre will continue its attempts to record the presence of box jellyfish in the area and assess whether the population is likely to spread.

Box jellyfish have been found on the east coast of Phuket, but not on the west coast, where the most popular tourist beaches are located.

Marine biologists believe that the two species of the box jellyfish, discovered in Phuket waters after the stinging death of a young Swedish tourist at a Krabi beach in April, prefer shallower coastal regions surrounded by mangroves.

No confirmed case of a box jellyfish sting has been recorded so far at any Phuket beach. But there have been reports of stings from divers and swimmers in Phang Nga Bay.

Phuket Governor Dr Preecha Ruangjan has already given television interviews in Thai explaining that the box jellyfish has yet to pose a threat to holidaymakers in Phuket waters.

However, bottles of common vinegar, the only certain treatment to relieve box jellyfish envenomation, are to be distributed as a precaution.

Experts from Australia, where box jellyfish inhabit northern waters in large numbers, have already helped in identification and indicated a willingness to provide more information and advice.

At least one diving organisation is distributing identification posters.

While it is premature to assume that the jellyfish will spread further, some resorts in the region are already looking at the cost of beach netting and stinger prevention suits.

One theory is that jellyfish are spreading in many parts of the world because their natural predators, fish and turtles, have been reduced in great numbers.

Phuket Jellyfish Alert: 'Boxie' Capture, Diver Stung
A box jellyfish has been captured on Phuket's northern east coast, and a diver has told what it is like to survive a sting. Panic should be avoided. But box jellyfish are in Phuket waters.
Phuket Jellyfish Alert: 'Boxie' Capture, Diver Stung

Jellyfish Photo Albums


Phuket Jellyfish Alert: The Biggest Test Yet?
Photo Album 'Sun, surf, sand ... but deadly jellyfish cast shadow on Phuket.' Hong Kong readers learn about Phuket's biological crisis.
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Phuket Box Jellyfish: Are We In Danger?
Photo Album Virtually every day now, box jellyfish are being found at a spot not far from Phuket City as marine biologists puzzle over their unexpected presence. Should we be alarmed?
Phuket Box Jellyfish: Are We In Danger?

Essential Reading


Phuket Jellyfish Alert: Expert To Fly In, Seminar Too
More accurate information should become available about the dangerous box jellyfish discovered on Phuket's east coast after an expert flies in for further research.
Phuket Jellyfish Alert: Expert To Fly In, Seminar Too

Phuket Alert: Expert Guide to Jellyfish
The box jellyfish found in a Phuket bay have probably always been here, says an expert. She shatters some of the myths and offers hope for safety programs to prevent deaths and injuries.
Phuket Alert: Expert Guide to Jellyfish

Phuket Jellyfish Alert: No Cause For Panic
The Governor of Phuket hears a briefing on the Phuket box jellyfish alert and suggests continuing research, alerting people to the dangers and the treatment of stings, and avoiding panic
Phuket Box Jellyfish:'No Cause For Panic'

Phuket Jellyfish Alert: Governor To Decide
Box Jellyfish continue to be taken from waters close to Phuket City, with distribution of the vinegar that can treat stings about to begin. The governor is to meet a leading marine centre researcher on Monday.
Phuket Jellyfish Alert: Governor To Decide

Phuket Box Jellyfish: Biologist Sounds Alert
Phuket's Marine Biological Centre has issued an alert over the presence of box jellyfish in waters off Krabi and Phuket. Scientists are continuing to try to define more clearly the dangers, without unnecessary alarm.
Phuket Box Jellyfish: Biologist Sounds Alert

Box Jellyfish Found Off Phuket: Death in Krabi
The death of a tourist off Krabi and the discovery of a non-fatal form of box jellyfish off Phuket bring a call for help - and a claim that many more deaths go unrecorded.
Box Jellyfish Found Off Phuket: Death in Krabi

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Sunday December 5, 2021
Horizon Karon Beach Resort & Spa

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