Mr. Dr. Greg Bole is back with Toren, Joe, and Kevin to discuss jelly fish and their amazing gelatinous friends! Immortal jellyfish, the intense pain of some jellyfish stings, and a live tasting of jellyfish!

Music: “Whippin’ That Jellyfish” by the State Street Swingers



30 Responses

      1. Jellyfish, raw, shredded, chilled, tossed with soy sauce, sesame seeds and sesame oil. Mostly served on formal occasions though. Why?

  1. I was just listening to this podcast and you guys were talking about the “impending sense of doom” caused by a jelly fish sting. This is also a symtom of an anaphylactic attack. I have had a severe peanut allergy since I was a child and always scoffed at the seemingly ridiculous symtom listed on the EpiPen website. That is until I started having an attack in a coffee shop. Even though this may seem silly, it can only describe it as a dark cloud which came over me. It was like having a very intense anxiety attack. I remember sitting in at my table thinking that I would never leave my table alive. Although it only lasted a few minutes, I have never felt anything like it before or since. It was as if the world was falling down around me. I was eleven.

    Now, I don’t know if everyone experiences an impending sense of doom the same way, this was just my experience. Another excellent episode. I just thought I’d share some light on a subject you seemed a bit confused about.

  2. Japanese do love their Jellyfish. There’s an anime series called Kuragehime, which translates to “jellyfish princess”. It’s an Ugly Betty story about a girl who’s a real jellyfish fan and it’s way way funnier (and overall better) than it has any right to be.

  3. You missed a jelly fish movie. “Bright Future”, a japanese film, which I remember being pretty good and is at 70% on Rotten Tomatoes, is about two friends who work in a factory, one of whom is developing a fresh water jellyfish as a hobby.He ends up getting arrested for murder, though, and his friend has to take care of the jelly fish until he eventually lets in loose in the canals on accident and it takes over Tokyo.

  4. Hey guys, another great episode. Firstly, massive kudos to Mike and your interns – lots of great work! I did notice on this podcast that the sound seemed to fade out sometimes, I think mainly when Greg was speaking?

  5. Your discussion about the various levels of pain from jellyfish stings reminded me of similar conversations I’ve heard about ants. Hence, future episode request: Ants. (At least I don’t think you’ve done that yet…)

  6. Maybe I missed it (I listen while I’m working in the lab), but I don’t think Greg answered the meat tenderizer question. My mom always used to put vinegar and meat tenderizer on stings. Her explanation was that the vinegar “killed the stingers” (and it sounds like she was basically right about that), and that the meat tenderizer broke the tentacles down. She had a “jellyfish sting kit” and was usually the first responder whenever anybody got stung at the beach (where we didn’t generally have life guards).

    I’m kind of in love with cannonball jellyfish. They’re super cute, and it’s also tons of fun to pick them up (they don’t sting) and lob them at tourists. Oh, how they scream 🙂

  7. I agree, I love the show, but unfortunately hearing the ends of some sentences cut off can be really distracting.

    Once again, one of my favourite topics for your shows (critters – including viruses, bacteria etc)!

    1. Yeah, I’m not sure how I let that get through. I’m working on a fixed version to be up soon. I have a non-gated version of the edited audio, but it will require other separate cleanup which takes time.

  8. When I lived in Australia, I was provided a full body wet suit to use while swimming in certain regions to help avoid being stung by jellyfish. Thankfully I never had to put it to the test.

    I also recall having to be careful on one of the beaches because the box jelly fish had washed ashore and they were difficult to see. A tourist had accidentally stepped on one earlier that day and had to be rushed to the hospital.

  9. Australia again, with a long hot summer we have a Jellyfish problem along our swimming beaches..
    Luckily these Jellyfish have only 4 tentacles although they still sting like hell. These are the same beaches my daughter was stung by a much larger jellyfish many years ago. The weal and rash lasted for 6 months and every time she had a hot shower more of the nematocysts would fire off.

  10. Just a quick email to let you know that I found your podcast through The Geologic podcast when you had Mr Hrab on as a guest and I am working my way through your back catalogue. I just listened to your Jellyfish episode and thought you would like this story. It was related on the ABC radio show conversations Tuesday 10 April 2012, by Richard Fitzpatrick who is a marine biologist and cameraman. He told of filming a segment on the box jellyfish for tourists with another marine biologist that he did not get on well with, at the end of the segment it was decided to show the effect of being stung by a small section of the tentacle. Richard got ready to film; the other biologist touched his arm with the tentacle and showed the resulting pain and welts. Richard turned around and said sorry I didn’t get the shot. He got him to sting himself 8 times before he finally admitted that he got the shot on the first take. Richard then discovered (the hard way) that a piece of box jellyfish tentacle can be hidden with devastating effect on a toilet seat.

  11. I hate those little bastards. I recently went to Tybee Island and as it happened it was jellyfish season, I did not know until after the fact. My dad’s girlfriend and I were stung by them. You know when you grab a hot pan? Yeah, that’s what it feels like, that plus an itching sensation.

  12. Being from Australia I’m used to everything trying to kill me. I got stung by jellyfish (not a box jelly thankfully) when I was in my teens while out surfing with friends. I didn’t notice at first until we got out of the water and noticed something slimy on my legs which turned out to be tentacles. Thankfully a friend who was a serious surfer had vinegar and bi carb soda on hand. It helped in removing the tentacles and with the sting a little but nothing helped with the pain. Spent the night in hospital in the worst pain I’d ever felt and my legs were itchy and covered in red welts for weeks. I learnt to wear a full body wet suit after that especially when the waters were particularly warm because it seems jellyfish love heat waves.

  13. Joe cried ‘is no water safe from these things?!’ well in the British schlock horror novel, ‘Slime,’ NO!

    “A boy accidentally fallen overboard … a child in a paddling pool …. an old man taking his daily swim … These are their ifirst prey.
    They arrived originally in ones and twos — deadly jellyfish eager to feast on human flesh. Attaching themselves lovingly to their victims’ bodies. Then stinging …. paralysing … feeding.
    Nothing can stop them — not even on dry land. Thousands surge over the beaches … fight their way inland up creeks and rivers … leaving behind their telltale smears of luminescent slime.

    But the final horror starts when they begin to breed. For now their young appear in reservoirs and storage tanks… slipping through drainpipes and water taps ….”

    the body count rises quickly in the most predictable ways, and the way the author always describes how the jellies tentacles ‘lovingly caress’ their victims made me wonder if he were some sort of gunge/vore fetishist in his private life NTTAWWT, but with the information that jellyfish have their nads in their digestive tract, maybe the guy did some research. the original jacket art just had an almost cartoony jellyfish with eyes and a fanged mouth, but at some point the publisher changed it to a screaming woman covered in stringy slime all over her heaving bosom.

  14. I about lost it when Joe said, “It’s like the ocean took a shit in my mouth.” I can’t imagine what that must have tasted like.