Texas spring breakers, watch out: The Portugese Man o’ War is back


Duuuhnuh. 

Duuuhnuh.

Dundundundundundundundunduuuuuunnnn.

No, we’re not talking about sharks, but there’s another sea creature that spring breakers on Padre Island might have to worry about.

Park rangers at the Padre Island National Seashore this week posted a photo of some of the first Portugese Man o’ War to hit the shore this season.

The Portugese Man o’ war, also known as “the floating terror,” looks pretty, but has enough venom in its tentacles to paralyze small fish and other prey. The venom is not deadly to humans (except in extremely, extremely rare cases), but it still hurts to get stung by a man o’ war.

Related: Six months after Hurricane Harvey, is Port Aransas ready for visitors?

If you do get stung, symptoms include severe pain, rashes, red welts on the skin, fever and other reactions that mimic an allergic reaction. Sometimes the tentacles can sting you and they won’t even be attached to the body of the man o’ war- they’re just out there, floating in the ocean. 

To treat a sting, rinse the sting site with vinegar to remove any leftover stingers, and then immerse the wound in hot water or cover it with a hot pack.

But as long as you keep an eye out, you should be fine. 


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Travel

New floating water park and obstacle course to open on Lake Travis June 29
New floating water park and obstacle course to open on Lake Travis June 29

If you’ve been seeking a new way to make a splash this summer, you’re in luck — a floating water park and obstacle course will open on Lake Travis at the end of this month. Waterloo Adventures, a floating water park on Lake Travis, is expected to open on June 29. Contributed by Waterloo Adventures The new park, called...
SeaWorld Orlando sails into summer with free beer, dolphin show, ‘Ignite’ fireworks
SeaWorld Orlando sails into summer with free beer, dolphin show, ‘Ignite’ fireworks

SeaWorld Orlando is all set for summer. The theme park has its Electric Ocean promotion in place with special nighttime activities, but there are other changes — including the (eventual) opening of its Infinity Falls raft ride. Here are five things to know before you go to SeaWorld.  EXCUSE ME WHILE I. The park has introduced a show called...
Five getaways with local food festivals that are worth the trip

Some hotels try to create buzz by opening restaurants with high-profile chefs. Lately, however, a growing number of properties want to offer more and are throwing entire food festivals instead.  Michael Heflin, senior vice president for the hotel division of Travel Leaders Group, thinks that hotels are getting into the festival business because...
Critics question influence of air perks on Congress

When Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., canceled most of the Senate's August recess, lawmakers and staffers didn't have to worry about one thing: airline ticket change fees.  That's because airlines allow members of Congress and their staff to book fully refundable fares at about the same rate their constituents pay for a highly restrictive...
With jet fuel prices up nearly 50 percent, fliers eventually will pay more, experts say

Jet fuel prices have shot up 40 percent to 50 percent over last year, but airline passengers in the U.S. don’t need to worry about airfares following that trend — yet.  Two of the nation’s largest airlines warned this week that rising fuel prices are cutting into their profits but suggested that air travelers probably will not...
More Stories