A mysterious jellyfish has been spotted on the coast at South Shields by a family out walking their dog.
Carole Smith visited the coast yesterday afternoon with partner Graham, son Joseph and pet pug Darlo when they spotted the creature on a rock just down from Camel Island.
The jellyfish was at the bottom of a cliff-side path. The tide was out so far that all of the rocks and seaweed were exposed.
Also at the beach were Graham's children Liam and Naomi, and friend Leah.
Carole, 54, told the Gazette that the children were exploring the sea creatures left on the rocks by the low tide, and went towards the creature thinking it was a rust-covered rock.
She added: "It turned out to be this jellyfish which looked a perfect specimen. As we wandered towards the grotto we came across several other small jellyfish, a small purple one and a small clear one with white colouring in it."
The find led Carole and her family to try and find out which type of jellyfish it is. The lion's mane jellyfish, commonly found in the English Channel, seemed to be one of the closest matches. This species is one of the largest, and colours range from vivid red and lighter orange to purple.
Carole's family continued their jellyfish investigation when they got home - but the mum had a warning for other families heading to the coast this summer.
She added: "On a more serious note, I think parents should be aware of children exploring this type of thing, because of the dangers some species pose and also people walking dogs."
Mum Rachael Brown has also spotted a jellyfish during the summer holidays.
She was in Sunderland with daughter Tammie-Leigh, 7, her own mum Michelle, 49, and Marge the dog, 2, when Tammie-Leigh spotted a red-looking jellyfish at Sunderland Fish Quay, near to Sambuca.
They caught the creature on camera at around lunchtime on Saturday.