The Most Venomous Animal is…….a Jellyfish?

Nature never fails to surprise us with its mesmerizing beauty. But the sad part is,we barely even know any of it. Nature can give us extreme bliss with its delicious and luscious fruits,at the same time many plants which we think are pretty may turn out to be horrendous. But the fact that it manages to fascinate us everytime is a wonder.For instance, did you know that snakes had infra-red vision,through which they are able to find their prey?

Photo by Pia

Before getting to know this jellyfish which is said to be the most venomous animal ever known,let’s get to know the characteristics and features of a jellyfish.

  • Jellyfish

What comes to your mind when you think of this animal? Well,a jelly. Partially, that’s exactly what it is. Jellyfishes are invertebrates, actually the term jellyfish is often used to describe any animal which is a made of ‘gelatinious’ material. They are mainly made up of water and protein. These organisms literally exist more than 200 types of these jellyfish,and more of them are yet to be explored.The counting,as to know what exactly is the population of the jellyfish is still unknown,because the larvae of jellyfish are usually found in deep sea-beds. Jellyfish are classified into two types:

  1. Medusae (these are the jellyfish which stings you if you go too close to them. Some of them are also venomous)
  2. Ctenophores( also known as comb jellies,these types of jellies do not sting you, fortunately)

Photo by Buğra Doğan 

Jellyfish use their sting,either if you go too close to them or it the jellyfish is really hungry and is hunting for its prey.

Jellyfish existed even before the Jurassic period. That is,they existed even before the first dinosaur came into being. What are their body parts,you may ask. Well,they don’t specifically have any brains(no offence) but they do have a specific structure which enables them to see. Very much like eyes. If we look in the language of English,a group of jellies are actually named as ‘smack’. When jellyfish go around in a large group,maybe with their friends, scientists give it a new name,probably to make our lives harder, as ‘bloom’.And trust me,by large I mean millions and millions of jellies,swimming together. Jellies are usually found in oceans,although,the possibility of them surviving in fresh water is not particularly known. Jellyfish are deep sea creatures,or that’s what known to us. Opaque would not be a word you would describe them with. Transparent? Nah,translucent would be more correct in their case,I guess. The blooms make it very difficult for fishermen and tourists. But I would not blame them,really. 

  • Lifespan

Jellyfishes don’t live really long. Some survive about less than a ear,whereas some species only for a few days. It totally depends on their species, really. The type of species,their habitat,the food they eat,and their ability to survive play a major role on their lifespan. Jellies have a particular stageat each point of their life. The most known stage is medusa, also known as the adult stage,where all the jellyfish does is swim around and also develops it’s tentacles. The larvae of the jellyfish is called a planulae,which grows by breeding on phytoplanktons(microbe which can photosynthesise),small 

fishes etc. 

Photo by Valdemaras D.

What do they sting? These animals actually have stinging cells inside their body which are called nematocysts. What these tentacles do is that they can actually enter literally inside our skin,maybe through our pores.

  • Are they any good?

Hey! Don’t make them the bad Gillian here! They are some delicacies in some countries,these jellies also provide sort of a living habitat to young and  small fishes in places where there is not much space to hide from predators. They use their tentacles to protect small fishes from their nasty predators. Also,some young crabs,which still can’t swim,prefer a good ride on the jellies’s back rather than all that painful work!

  • The Box Jellyfish

Phew! Now that you know what are jellyfish (I really hope so!)let’s get to know the animal which is probably the most venomous in the world.

From the name,you might’ve guessed that these jellyfish have a box like structure. It is actually !ore of a box -like -bell, I would say. From these bells,in the corners hang four hang four long and hollow tentacles.The body structure of this animal is pretty interesting,all around. We will not go into a lot of details,solely because at some point of time, you might sort of get…….bored? 

Anyways,these jellyfish have a better,and we’ll developed nervous system than the other animals,and they are also the jellies which have true eyes,i.e with retinas,lenses etc.The eyes are located in the outer surfaces of their bell and they are ridiculously fast in swimming.

These species are declared to be called the most venomous but according to a research,only some species actually kill you. These type of Jellyfish have around about 20 species with the exploration of mor species still going on.

The venom in them,if in contact with our skin make our cells so porous( holes in our cell membrane) which makes it easier for potassium to leak. Now, potassium is an element which is needed by our body but in huge doses can also stop your heart. Potassium ,at inappropriate doses can result to be very harmful for humans. And don’t think that you would have time to call someone to your help. Nope. This process literally takes just about 2 to 5 minutes and slowly,may lead to death. And I am not kidding here. In children,this process could be even faster,as their body is smaller. The deaths seem to be more common in the parts of Australia.Most Jellyfish venom make your body almost turn into liquid. Spooky? Oh,you’ve got a long way to cross,buddy..!

All in all,unless you don’t disturb them,they don’t disturb younas well! Initially,we start the write,then…..why do we think they are the one who are ruthless…??

Categories: Education, environment, Science

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