I am sure that some visitors to Australia wonder how we Aussies survive to become full-grown adults with all the hazards we have to face, sharks, crocks, snakes and spiders. One of the questions we often get asked is “Is it safe to do a surf lesson” so this is how we explain to anyone with concerns.
So the only deadly jellyfish in Australian waters are the Box Jellyfish (Irukandji jellyfish) and they live in the very warm tropical waters of the Great Barrier reef, we very rarely see them south of Bundaberg unless they are lost.
We do get jellyfish (Aurelia aurita) in the Summer but they are completely harmless balls of jelly that our children throw at each other for fun, sometimes there may be some sea lice ( tiny little things that can itch you) living under the Jellies but a flush with fresh water will sort that out if you get itchy.
The Gold Coast does have Blue Bottles (Physalia physalis) sometimes in the Summer ( around January/February), but they come in on the high tide and only when the wind is blowing in a certain direction so we usually just avoid a surf lesson if there are a lot, but they are not dangerous they can just give you a little sting if their tentacles make contact with your skin- we can also offer long sleeve rash shirts and long surf pants if we think there are a few around. Again, fresh water and some ice sorts the sting out pretty quickly.
Sharks, well it’s the ocean so there are sharks, fortunately for us on the Gold Coast the big sharks that have been known to nibble on people only like the really cold water as they like to eat seals. For this reason, they tend to stay in the cooler waters from NSW south to Victoria and if they do venture into the Queensland waters they stay out in the very deep or the smaller ones may swim in a little closer but mainly where the beaches are further out- like southern Gold Coast on the headlands, all of the main beaches along Surfers Paradise and Main Beach have shark nets just in case one gets lost
Now in saying all that, because our surf lessons are for beginners, we very rarely take you out past waist deep so it’s far too shallow for them to come in. The Location that we take you, The Spit, has lots of great sandbanks so we can take you out quite a fair way but still be in relatively shallow water In the rare instance that we see a fin it is always a playful dolphin surfing in the beautiful waves at the Spit where we do our lessons.
So your only concern while your surfing with us is to look cool for the picture 😉 If you have further questions regarding sharks, deadly spider or Velociraptors 😀 drop us a line here or call us at 1800 GET WET and we will be happy to help you.
Enjoy your surf lesson,