WARNING: Graphic images inbound. 

After a weekend at Dendy Street Beach in Brighton, Southern Australia, 16-year-old Sam Kanizay found that after a mere 10-minutes of soaking his feet in the beach’s water, tiny carnivorous sea creatures had begun to devour the skin on his feet, leaving a bloody mess thirty minutes later. 

He shrugged off the pins and needles sensation felt during the soak, believing it to just be the effect of the beach’s cold, numbing water on his legs. However, as Sam began to walk back to his home, he noticed that a lot of sand was clinging to his leg, even after attempting to shake it off. After taking a shower, Sam was horrified to see “hundreds of little pinholes or pin-sized bites distributed all over my ankle and the top of my foot.” 

Blood on Sam Kanizay's legs and feet after he was apparently bitten by small marine creatures.

Who was the predator that inflicted this damage? Sea fleas. Sam’s father then took it upon himself to scoop up the dangerous critters with a net and video-taped them ravenously consuming raw red meat. Sea fleas can grow up to be almost half an inch long (though must only grow to be a quarter of an inch in size), and can typically be found cleaning up the corpses of dead marine animals on the sea floor. 

Watch the sea fleas devour raw meat: 

Dr. Genefor Walker-Smith, located in Melbourne, examined the samples of the lethal insectoids, stating that such behavior among this species was rare, and that it was likely that Sam had, “disturbed a feeding group,” and that sea fleas “are generally not out there waiting to attack like piranhas.”

This entire event is absolutely cringe-worthy and itch-inducing. Next time when you’re looking for that perfect beach spot to get some time in the sun, make sure that you won’t be sporting these suckers as soon as you leave the water.