Here’s a Visitor That Comes to Waikiki Once a Month!

Mar 26, 2020 | General Information

Just as reliable as Old Faithful at Yellowstone Park, the mysterious Box Jellyfish of Hawaii will arrive on its shores between 8 and 12 days after each full moon. Once that time has passed, they will disappear again until their return a month later.

Jellyfish are by no means just a Hawaii phenomenon, in fact the three species of Box Jellyfish that reside here are actually fairly recent arrivals having thought to have migrated to the islands sometime in the 1800’s. In recent years they have become more numerous however and are now a constant landmark on the Waikiki shoreline once a month. In other parts of the world they are much more prevalent and have been so for millions of years. Not only are they volumnus with regard to their sheer numbers but they also come in a serious number of forms and sizes ranging from the size of a quarter to some who extend, complete with tentacles, hundreds of feet in length.

Venom potency is also relative to the specific type of jellyfish with some being just an annoyance to others being absolute killers that can debilitate a human in a matter of minutes. No matter how you look at them they are generally not seen in a positive light as their stings are always unpleasant and can happen in great numbers here in Hawaii. Even with lifeguard warnings set out on the beaches it is not unheard of to have over 300 people stung by Hawaii’s Box Jellyfish in a single day on Waikiki and surrounding areas. Oahu is not the only island that endures the ravages of the jellyfish and I can attest to the fact personally that they can hit you during a peaceful swim on Maui.

Jellyfish are truly one of the worlds most bizarre and most versatile organisms. Ranging in size from fractions of an inch to a couple of yards in diameter, varying in depths of water from its more accustomed surface level to literally 1000’s of feet in depth and ranging on the planet from tropical to arctic chill waters, these Hawaiian visitors are among the most unusual to spend time visiting our islands.