Invasion of giant jellyfish? Huge creature washes up in Devon

Many smaller jellyfish have washed up on the beach over the last few weeks

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Credits: SWNS.com

A freak 3ft wide jellyfish armed with a powerful sting has washed up on a UK beach sparking fears of a summer invasion.

The rare creature is thought to be a Lion's Mane - a breed that can potentially cause serious harm to humans if they're stung.

See also: Giant jellyfish spotted by divers in Mexico

See also: Thousands of jellyfish wash up on Cornwall beach

Over the past two weeks many smaller jellyfish have been spotted on the picturesque beach in Saunton, North Devon.

Locals say the latest is the largest by far to wash ashore.

Credits: SWNS.com

Many smaller jellyfish have washed up on the beach over the last few weeks

A sting from the Lion's Mane jellyfish can result in blistered red skin and intense pain but most healthy people will simply have to wait for the pain to pass.

However, in rare cases it may lead to muscle contractions and cramps, respiratory problems and even heart attacks.

Retired businessman Justin Wilks, 53, said: "It is starting to become a real issue.

"I'm down here most mornings with my dog and we've been dodging them for the last week or so.

"We normally get jellyfish on the beach in the summer but this is really early to start seeing them.

Credits: SWNS.com

The latest freak discovery was found on Saunton beach in North Devon

Credits: SWNS.com

The creature measures around 3ft in width

"I'm concerned this means more jellyfish than ever before will be in our seas over the summer months."

Local cafe owner Julie Pearce, 43, added: "We are already having some real monsters wash up on the beach.

"The horrid things creep me out and make me think twice about going into sea".

The lion's mane jellyfish, also known as the giant jellyfish or the hair jelly, is the largest known species of jellyfish.

Credits: SWNS.com

The lion's mane jellyfish is also known as the giant jellyfish or the hair jellyfish and is the largest known type

It is common in the English Channel, Irish Sea, North Sea and in western Scandinavian waters.

They can grow a bell diameter of over two metres and have tentacles over 40 metres long which catch their prey such as prawns, shrimps, small fish and other jellyfish.

They are usually an orange, red or yellow in colour, with a shallow umbrella.

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