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Things that can sting you are part of every ocean swimming experience, not matter where you are in the world.

Associate Professor Jamie Seymour, Director of the Tropical Australian Stinger Research Unit at James Cook University, studies venomous animals and has a particular interest in decreasing the envenomings of humans by jellyfish. He has some personal experience in this area too - he has been stung by Irukandji 11 times! He is a world leader in the studies of the ecology and biology of Box jellyfish (his favourite jellyfish), and his work has led to pharmaceuticals being made from animal venom.

We chatted about how to treat ocean stings (not with vinegar nor, funnily enough, urine!), habitats and the influence of climate change on the spread of stingers, stinger evolution, the difference between poison and venom, and between a toxicologist and a toxinologist, and a host of other jellyfish tangents (tentacles?).

Songs in this episode - all licensed under a Creative Commons License:

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