A TikTok user posted a video of himself playing with a sea creature – but thousands were quick to warn him the animal was highly poisonous.
It’s the haunting creature that caught the eye of an Aussie dude hitting the east coast.
But the cute blue striped “sea slug” could have made TikTok user @julianobayd seriously ill if she stung him.
Dancing in the water, these spectacular and rare creatures actually absorb the poison of other creatures – so they can deliver quite a punch if you get stung.
From jellyfish to blueberries, Glaucus atlanticus – also known as the sea swallow, blue angel, blue dragon, or blue sea slug – usually float upside down on the surface tension of water, where they are carried by winds and ocean currents.
The blue of their body allows them to be camouflaged with the blue of the water, while the other side is silver / gray which is facing downward to blend in with the silvery surface of the sea seen from below. .
They also feed on other pelagic creatures, including the poisonous Portuguese Man o ‘War or the Blue Bottle. They then store the other creature’s poison in their own tissues as a defense against predators.
As a result, humans who handle the slug can receive a very painful and potentially dangerous sting.
The creatures have been sighted along Australia’s east coast in recent years.
And although the TikTok user jokes that it looks like a Pokemon, it was lucky to get away with it unscathed – as its 48,000 followers were quick to point out.
The post on the video, which shows the user behind the account management and the creature, received over 1.3 million likes and 31,000 comments.
“It’s a Glaucus atlanticus and it’s a strange dragon thing that is commonly found on the beaches of Australia, ”one person commented. “It’s VERY toxic.”
“Golden rule with marine life in the southern hemisphere… if it’s a bright blue, that’s a no-no,” added another.
“I’ve seen them all over South East Queensland.”
This isn’t the first time these creatures have been spotted on Australia’s east coast, with slugs making their home there in 2015 and 2017.