The creature was found by Eve and Adam Dickinson, who were walking on the beach with their children.
“Jellyfish were everywhere and we were pretty amazed. Then we saw this massive one that seemed different from all of the others,” Stuff told Eve Dickinson as saying.
“We spent ages looking at it because of its beautiful colours and shape. My boy said it reminded him of a volcano.
“It was incredible. We turned over some of the other jellyfish on the beach to see if they looked the same as the big one but they didn’t. This one was definitely different.”
Also known as Cyanea rosea, the lion’s mane jellyfish are the largest species found in New Zealand waters – and have been known to grow more than one metre in diameter.
National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research marine biology technician Diana Macpherson confirmed it’s pretty unusual that these jellyfish wash up in September.
“They’re usually around during the spring and summer because the plankton starts to bloom, so as a result they come around, too,” added Macpherson.
“They have a toxin in their tentacles which can hurt you if you get too close to them. Treat them with caution.”