Critter Science

The Science of Animals

box jellyfish

The Painful and Potentially Deadly Box Jellyfish

The great barrier reef… Home of beauty and wonder. Also the home to one of the most dangerous animals in nature, the box jellyfish! Box jellies are small in appearance but pack a highly venomous punch capable of death by heart attack due to sheer pain.

First the Stats…

Scientific name: Cubozoa
Length: 8 inch body, up to 9 foot tentacles
Lifespan: 3-4 months

Now on to the Facts!

box jellyfish
1.) The venom from the big box jellyfish’s nematocysts, located in just 6 feet of tentacle is painful enough to cause a person to die from a heart attack!

2.) The box jelly has approximately 800,000 stinging organelles for every 1/3 of an inch! Their tentacles can reach up to 9 feet long.

3.) There are 29 known species of box jellies.
box jellyfish
4.) Symptoms of a sting include headaches, rapid heart rate, agitation, vomiting, extensive sweating, and extremely high blood pressure. This is known as Irukanji Syndrome.

5.) Even though all jellyfish are venomous, this one tops the charts. The pain experienced by a stinging incident is excruciating and can be lethal!

But wait, there’s more on the box jellyfish!

6.) The big box jelly has 24 eyes. These eyes are on the inside of their bell (body).
box jellyfish
7.) Jellies are diurnal (awake during the day).

Did you know…?
Sea turtles are the only known predator of jellyfish.

8.) These critters only live for about 3 months. This lifespan is steadily increasing as global ocean temperatures rise, due to global warming.

9.) Due to global warming, jellyfish are also becoming more prolific, worldwide.
box jellyfish
10.) A big box jellyfish can lose up to 30% of its bodyweight in about 24 hours if it doesn’t eat. They eat about 2-3 times a day.

Now a Short Box Jellyfish Video!

Be sure to comment below!

Critter Man

With over 40 years of critter experience to my credit and hundreds of zoology teaching hours to people around the world, I have amassed not only a continuing thirst for critter knowledge but a desire to teach others all I can about the majesty and wonder of our natural world. Critter Science is a culmination of such knowledge.I have hands on as well as book acquired intel on all kinds of critters. Whether they're on land, sea, or air.I will never say that I know everything about all animals. That's impossible, even for a savant. But, that being said, ask me any animal question and I'll answer it. If I don't know the answer, I'll get an answer for you!Let it be said that I have been oft times accused of loving animals more than I love people. I can neither confirm nor deny this.

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