Strange blob-like sea creatures washing ashore across Southern California coast


(KTLA) – A strange sea creature resembling a jellyfish has returned to Southern California waters a year after millions were spotted in and around Ventura and San Diego counties.

Velera, commonly known as the sailor of the wind, is an oval-shaped blob that lives on the ocean’s surface and is propelled by small, stiff sails and carried around the world by the wind. Ocean currents and winds move the creatures from place to place, allowing them to catch prey with their stinging tentacles.

Although always lurking in the area, the Berella Berella is often swept to the California coast by powerful spring storms.

Last year, Californians visited their local beaches in droves to catch a glimpse of life both on the beach and in the waves. Trillions of fish washed up on the eastern Pacific coast in 2014 and 2015, said Cassandra Davis of the Long Beach Aquarium of the Pacific.

The wind sailor is a type of water insect that primarily feeds on plankton, much like the Portuguese man o’ war, a poisonous marine creature known to be a nuisance to surfers throughout the Pacific. Unlike the man o’ war, the bite of the Berella velella is considered mild to humans.

While the sting may not be enough to knock you off your knees, swimmers, surfers, and other water-based recreational activities should avoid walking into crowds of wind-blown sailors.

Meanwhile, other marine life happily accepts the floating chunks in the area. Sunfish, commonly known as sunfish, are big fans of Velera and have been spotted gorging on ocean current transients in recent days.

It is also sometimes eaten by seabirds and sea turtles, but experts say its poison and lack of meat make it an unappetizing meal for more predators.

Jessica Rodriguez of Davies Locker Whale Watching in Newport Beach said she has seen hundreds of wind-ridden sailors in recent days and shared images of sunfish feeding on it.

The thousands of wind-borne sailors that have recently appeared in California will be eaten by predators, pulled back into the ocean by the tide, or left to rot and die on the surface.

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Strange chunks of marine life wash ashore in Southern CaliforniaBerella Berella captured on the shore near Newport Beach, California (Delaney Trowbridge/Davies Rocker)Berella Berella captured on the shore near Newport Beach, California (Delaney Trowbridge/Davies Rocker)Berella Berella captured on the shore near Newport Beach, California (Delaney Trowbridge/Davies Rocker)Berella Berella captured off the coast near Newport Beach on April 26, 2024.  (Jenna McCune/Davie's Locker)A sunfish was photographed eating Berella Berera on the shore near Newport Beach.  (Delaney Trowbridge/Davie's Locker)



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