The Jellies of Fourth of July
Florida's Volusia County beaches were littered with Sea Nettle jellyfish over Fourth of July holiday weekend
Dozens of Sea Nettle jellyfish are among the thousands that washed ashore in Ormond Beach, Saturday, July 2, 2011. This photo was shot about two miles north of Granada Blvd. (JOE BURBANK, ORLANDO SENTINEL)
In all my years of beaching it in northern Volusia county, I've never seen an invasion of jellyfish, also known as sea jellies, quite like what filled the surf and littered the beach shoreline in Ormond on Saturday.
Looking like glass medallions twinkling in the afternoon sun, the jellies stretched by the thousands in northern Volusia, up to Ormond-By-The-Sea. More than 2,000 visitors countywide reported being stung according to Volusia County Beach Patrol.Most of the jellies I observed were the common Sea Nettle, with an occassional Cannonball jellyfish. It's the second consecutive holiday weekend in Florida that we've faced a jellyfish incursion; Memorial Day weekend saw a rare, massive influx of thousands of Mauve Stinger jellyfish, a non-indigenous, stinging purple variety, covering beaches in Brevard county.