Everyone who visits New Smyrna Beach raves about our unique, little beachside town, with its charming street-side bistros, art galleries and shops for boutiquing and antiquing. Not to mention New Smyrna’s miles and miles of lovely, pristine, white sand beaches. Just be careful because, like any other beach, it’s not without its sea monsters…
Sand fleas burrow in the sand and can inflict small bites that are irritating, itchy and typically disappear within four to seven days. They are pretty rare, so they are usually not a problem, but they CAN carry diseases and their bites CAN become infected; but here’s the grossest part. They can burrow into the skin of their host where they hope to remain until they can lay their eggs. So if you notice a swollen bite with a black spot in the middle after a beach day, definitely seek medical attention. Sand fleas are most active in the evenings, during the night and around daybreak; and they feed on seaweed so try to avoid those times and the areas on the beach with an abundance of seaweed.
You also want to steer clear of jellyfish. Most jellyfish in New Smyrna Beach have a mild sting if any at all and are just a nuisance, but there are some jellyfish with venom strong enough to land you in the hospital. Purple flags are placed on the beach to warn beachgoers if they happen to come out in numbers, which doesn’t happen very often. If you simply watch where you are walking and swimming, you should be just fine.
New Smyrna Beach is also pretty famous for its shark population, but sharks don’t seek out human prey. Shark attacks on people are usually a case of mistaken identity. To avoid sharks, avoid the places where there is the most shark food – like waters that are being fished and where bait fish congregate – so that you don’t seem like part of the buffet. Also try not to swim alone, since shark attacks tend to happen to lone individuals; and don’t go in the ocean at night, dawn or dusk when sharks are most active.
The moral of this story is that if you just exercise a little bit of caution, you will be able to stay safe while you are having fun in this amazing beachside vacation destination!