Remember sea lice, the pesky creatures that caused discomfort for beachgoers in Ocean City last summer? Well, the tiny marine creatures resurfaced on the East Coast — Virginia Beach, to be exact.

Though Virginia Beach is approximately three hours south of Maryland’s resort town of Ocean City, the gulf stream, which is the ocean current responsible for transporting warmer waters of the Gulf of Mexico up the eastern U.S. coast, travels approximately four miles per hour, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. That means sea lice, which travel with ocean currents because of their minuscule size, could be in Ocean City by mid-August.

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Sea lice are actually not lice, at all. Experts say the term “sea lice” is a misnomer for tiny jellyfish larvae with stinging abilities. The larvae’s stings can cause itchy, red rashes, known as “seabather’s eruption.” The jellyfish larvae are nearly a millimeter long and translucent in color, making the creatures difficult to see with the naked eye.

Experts say the rash is easily remedied by rinsing all the sea lice off your body and clothes and applying topical anti-itch cream to soothe the skin. Experts also suggest thoroughly washing and drying any material which may have come in contact with sea lice as to not cause any post-beach trip stings and rashes.

However, the rash-causing, itch-inducing jellyfish larvae are not be confused with the small, parasitic crustaceans which feed on fish to survive (read: actual sea lice), according to marine experts. The parasitic sea lice do not affect humans, only fish, and simply, but misleadingly, share names with the jellyfish larvae form of “sea lice.”

Nonetheless, if you’re planning a trip to Ocean City in July, you should be safe from seabather’s eruption, for now.

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