What to do when you step on a cobbler fish with poisonous spikes. Back in Week 6!

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It’s late February, we are staying at Cosy Corner near Albany. Probably one of the most beautiful free campsites around town. But this post is not about that, it’s about my foot drama and pain!

Unfortunately after our morning swim, I stepped on something spiky under water. I felt a sharp sting and hobble footed back to shore…  Consulting the locals I was told it’s likely a cobbler fish, a saltwater catfish with an eel end and poisonous spikes. They love to build burrows in the sand and wait for you to step on them.

Symptoms

Well, for starters there’ll be a wound that might look like you stepped onto a tack or nail.
Second, PAIN, if you’re male it’s likely to hurt even more (see my man flu post..) (and yes, I am being facetious)
Third, your foot will swell a fair bit
Fourth, the pain will get worse for one to one and a half hours or so.

Treatment

Heat some water to around 45 degree Celsius and put a healthy limb into it to check the temperature first. If it’s not too hot put your injured foot in there. The pain should reside within seconds. Once the water cools off it’ll come right back. So you might as well keep boiling water and make yourself and the people around you a nice cuppa because that’s all you can do for the next two to four hours…

Warning

Don’t just pour hot water into the bucket with your injured foot. The poison will numb your nerves and there are stories about people unknowingly boiling their injured foot. Ouch.

Deadly stings side note

As a local pointed out to me, “if you’re not dead within two to seven minutes you’ll be fine.” Thanks.

So there you go, if you’re reading this because you got stung you’re probably fine. You’re welcome.

Disclaimer

You may not know this, but I’m not a doctor. When in doubt, go to a hospital and don’t seek advice on the internet or from travel blogging Aussie-Germans.