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Jellyfish in Florida panhandle beaches

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dallas tx
posts: 13
Jellyfish in Florida panhandle beaches

We are thinking about taking a vacation to Destin or Pensacola Aug 2nd-9th. I am alarmed by all the posts regarding jellyfish. We have 5 young children and don't want them to get stung obviously. I am looking for advice on if we should go or if there are other places we should consider?

posts: 1,967
reviews: 11
1. Re: Jellyfish in Florida panhandle beaches

I see there are 2 posts regarding jellyfish in the forum. Sorry, haven't been to Pensacola yet so I am no expert. We are going there this August. Wondering why you haven't received a response yet?

There are always things that can make a vacation unpleasant from bad weather to animals like jellyfish. Regardless of their presence we will still be there in August and with the appropriate remedies should my family get stung. If you want to see Pensacola or Destin, by all means go and just be prepared. I wonder if the sound side would have any if they are present on the gulf side?

If you see a purple flag flying -> dangerous marine life which includes jellyfish www.pensacolasgreatest.com/WarningFlags.html

posts: 721
2. Re: Jellyfish in Florida panhandle beaches

As a local I'd say there is no predicting the jellyfish and seaweed attacks...wind and weather conditions control these events. However, as the summer moves on, there seems to be less and less of these nuisances. Mother Nature rules here. Fantastic beach time is mid-Sept thru Oct.

Jellyfish sting relief: put full strength white vinegar in a hand spray bottle, spray area liberally (do not rub or scratch) at 3 min intervals about 3 or 4 times. Pain will go away.

dallas tx
posts: 13
3. Re: Jellyfish in Florida panhandle beaches

Thanks for the sting relief info. I am sure we will need that. We have decided to go to Destin West in Okaloosa Island, but we are going 7/26-8/2 now. We are very, very EXCITED!!!!! Now if Mother Nature will cooperate, we should have a great time.

posts: 6
4. Re: Jellyfish in Florida panhandle beaches

We just returned from our trip to Pensacola Beach from June 30 through July 8. It was so odd, some days the jellyfish were thick and some days they weren't as bad. Some of the jellyfish were really big with extra long tentacles. We caught about 50 I'd say one day with nets. We also went out into the Gulf on a dolphin trip (Chase N Fins - extremely nice and very inexpensive) and saw a manaray, tons of dolphins and at one point the jellyfish were so thick there were just thousands upon thousands of them. But keep in mind, this was out in the gulf, not in water you'd swim in. The shore/beach is no where that bad. Also, we saw a 1.5 foot shark (yes at the beach, the beach, the beach!) and we walked out on the pier and saw a fisherman wrestling with a shark about 4 feet long! Of course, he was going to cut the line, but I think he was having a little fun with it first. My hubby got a pic of it. It was something great to see, but definitely scared the crap out of us! Especially considering it was at the pier just feet away from where people were riding on surfboards and at the beach. Just knowing this shark was right there was enough to make you stay in the pool! The hotels usually have the vinegar solution close to spray it right on ya and I saw little bity kids get stung and go right back into the water so I'd just be careful and have fun! Enjoy your trip!

Austin, Arkansas
posts: 9
5. Re: Jellyfish in Florida panhandle beaches

You never know when the jellies will show up, but they do make a product you can order online that is suppost to prevent jellyfish stings. I have no idea if it works or not, but I'll probably try it. The product is called safesea. It's probably just a bottle of sunblock, but it can't hurt.

posts: 721
6. Re: Jellyfish in Florida panhandle beaches

Local speaking:

Save your money when buying a jellyfish sting commerical product! (You'll need it for gas.) Go with the white vinegar.

As for sharks...they are always there just cruising out beyond the farthest sandbar where the water starts to get deep. When you fly over the water at low level, you can see them against the white sand bottom just patrolling up and down the coast. Big mothers, too! They do not like humans as a food source. It is a mistaken identity when there is an attack. Your chance of being bitten by a shark is far less than having a car wreck. They tend to feed early morning and early evening.

Atlanta, Georgia
posts: 4
reviews: 5
7. Re: Jellyfish in Florida panhandle beaches

There is no rhyme or reason to jellyfish. One day they may appear the next day not. Depends on weather and tides and coastal conditions. They are allover the panhandle intermittently, less so on the sound sides. We have tried vaseline rubbed allover especially on legs and arms,and it really seems to provide a barrier to stings.

posts: 1,967
reviews: 11
8. Re: Jellyfish in Florida panhandle beaches

I can't wait less.... than 2 weeks counting.

Vaseline seems kind of amusing but I will bring a large tub of the stuff. Good thing there is a Walmart nearby. Hey, anything that works and will keep my kids from getting stung will be of help. Thanks.

Bought a spray bottle for that white vinegar. Also, read other n(h)umerous home remedies such as ammonia/windex, rubbing alcohol, meat tenderizer, and a few others including urine. I think I'll stick to the white vinegar,though.

tampa, florida
posts: 1
9. Re: Jellyfish in Florida panhandle beaches

Just spent July 4th weekend in Ft Walton & Navarre, between Destin and Pensacola, and it was absolutely gorgeous! we did encounter jelly fish, but they were small ones....the kids didn't get stung (7yr & 4yr old) but my 54 yr old sister did....she's tough, said it stung for about a minute and was over! she was stung at least half a dozen times...if it would have been me, different story maybe...we are natives. We live closer to west coast, Sarasota beaches have them, too, just not as many. may be a little farther for you, but Siesta Key, Sarasota is an awesome beach, rated #3 in world by travel experts & there seem to be less jelly fish there...

posts: 87
10. Re: Jellyfish in Florida panhandle beaches

Spent today on the beach all day and I agree with the above post , the jellyfish seem to be very small and when stung it just bothered my daughter for a second with a small red bump and I did not get stung at all and we were out for a few hours at least :) water is beautiful and clear and aqua green ! Now who knows what tomorrow will bring ?? :)