Australia has some large blue blubbers that can cause problems for open water swimmers.
"They were big," said Larisa Ilchenko, the Olympic 10K gold medalist. "I could hear girls screaming on the first lap when they got stung."
World champion Angela Maurer of Germany agreed, "My whole body just burned. There were so many jellyfish out there."
And, as open water swimmers know very well, there are all kinds of jellyfish around the world...in all different colors.
In the Irish Channel, there are red Lion's Mane Jellyfish...with tenticles up to 30 feet that are even longer than the Nomura's jellyfish of Japan (shown above).
At the New York Pro Swim in Manhattan as a safety precaution, the athletes will receive a proven product, StingMate®, a mixture of vinegar gel with menthol.
Photo of the blue blubber by Dr. Jim Miller. Photo of the Lion's Mane Jellyfish was taken during Colm O'Neill's Irish Channel crossing.
Copyright © 2009 by World Open Water Swimming Association