The Portuguese Institute of the Sea and Weather has issued a warning of the dangers posed by the species physalia physalis, more commonly known as the Portuguese man o' war, which is washing up along Portugal’s coastline, the Azores and Madeira.
"Among the species that occur in Portugal, the Portuguese man o' war is the one that requires the most caution," opined the IPMA, about a species influenced by winds and surface currents and often is spotted along the Portuguese coast. The jellyfish is a blue colour, sometimes with lilac and pink tones.
"Its tentacles can reach 30 metres in length and sting, capable of causing serious burns. Therefore, it is important to remember that one should not touch the tentacles, even when the jellyfish appears to be dead on the beach," advises the institute.
If members of the public are stung by the jellyfish, clean the affected area with sea water and remove any pieces of tentacle stuck to the skin. Vinegar may be applied and always seek medical advice.
Since 2016, the GelAvista programme has been running.
Scientisist have been gathering data on the distribution of jellyfish along the Portuguese coast and alerting the public if the stinging kind is in evidence.
Information of sightings (date, place, number and photographs) should be sent to email@example.com, or through the GelAvista app or check out the GelAvista Facebook page.