KOTA KINABALU - Taking a dip in the sea along parts of Sabah's west coast may not be a good idea now due to the jellyfish season.
Universiti Malaysia Sabah's Borneo Marine Research Institute (BMRI) lecturer Muhammad Ali Syed Hussein said jellyfish could be found along the beaches and parts of the coastline in the early part of the year.
"The sea currents bring in colder water and that brings planktons. The planktons in turn attract other larger marine creatures, including shrimp and jellyfish," he said.
He said the turbidity of the colder sea water made it difficult to spot the transparent jellyfish.
"It is best not to go swimming in the sea for now and exercise caution," he said.
Four children, aged between nine and 12 years, were reported to have been stung by jellyfish in Tanjung Aru between Jan 9 and Jan 17.
BMRI researcher Dr John Madin said 16 jellyfish species could be found in waters off Sabah and the sting of three of the species was venomous.
They are Chiropsalmus quadrigatus, Chiropsalmus quadromunus and Carybdea rastoni which is locally known as balung api.