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Displaying items by tag: Industrial mussel 'Dalkey' dredgers

#DredgingDalkey - Industrial mussel seed dredging will leave Ireland's coastal waters "full of jellyfish and little else", convervationists claim.

As the The Irish Independent writes, four industrial trawlers had worked in Dublin Bay over the three days beginning last Sunday (23 October). 

Afloat.ie adds the dredging activity was understood to be for mussel seed fishing by the four trawlers dragging cage nets across the seabed of Dalkey Sound. On the final day of dredging, Tuesday, the last vessels to operate, the near 50m long Emerald Gratia (photo above) and 40m Rona, departed for Lough Foyle. The pair arrived last Wednesday at Carrickarory Pier, south of Moville.

The Irish Independent also in its coverage wrote, the Government permits industrial dredging for young mussels but last Thursday the Supreme Court ruled that the contents of the seabed inside our six-mile territorial limit are State "assets" and should be protected.

Two of the trawlers operating in Dublin Bay last week are understood to have been collecting seed mussel for "finishing" grounds in Welsh waters. 

Two others, registered in the Republic, are believed to have been dredging for mussel farms on the west coast of Ireland.

The sea area being dredged, like much of the coastal area of Ireland, has seen major declines in many types of sea life, with anglers and small commercial fishing operations reporting falls in catches year after year. And this summer, as in other recent years, beaches and bathing places around Irish inshore waters have been closed due to swarms of stinging jellyfish.

The few people still earning a living from inshore fishing said that the dredging was causing huge and long-term damage to our fisheries. "The damage caused by the dredgers is absolutely enormous," said Dalkey lobster fisherwoman and boat-hire operator Dolores Smith

"There are stretches of seabed just over there that have been obliterated. The Dublin Bay prawn is extinct now. There are none in the bay any more. People may call prawns Dublin Bay but they're from somewhere else because there are none left here."

Ms Smith also said there was a foul smell around Dalkey Sound and the other dredged areas."It smelt like rotting corpses; it was horrible out there," she added.

She pointed out that Dalkey Sound is officially designated a "specially protected area", yet this has not prevented the trawling of the seabed.

For more including a response from The Irish Wildlife Trust, the newspaper reports here. 

Published in Fishing

Marine Science Perhaps it is the work of the Irish research vessel RV Celtic Explorer out in the Atlantic Ocean that best highlights the essential nature of marine research, development and sustainable management, through which Ireland is developing a strong and well-deserved reputation as an emerging centre of excellence. From Wavebob Ocean energy technology to aquaculture to weather buoys and oil exploration these pages document the work of Irish marine science and how Irish scientists have secured prominent roles in many European and international marine science bodies.

 

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At A Glance – Ocean Facts

  • 71% of the earth’s surface is covered by the ocean
  • The ocean is responsible for the water cycle, which affects our weather
  • The ocean absorbs 30% of the carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere by human activity
  • The real map of Ireland has a seabed territory ten times the size of its land area
  • The ocean is the support system of our planet.
  • Over half of the oxygen we breathe was produced in the ocean
  • The global market for seaweed is valued at approximately €5.4 billion
  • · Coral reefs are among the oldest ecosystems in the world — at 230 million years
  • 1.9 million people live within 5km of the coast in Ireland
  • Ocean waters hold nearly 20 million tons of gold. If we could mine all of the gold from the ocean, we would have enough to give every person on earth 9lbs of the precious metal!
  • Aquaculture is the fastest growing food sector in the world – Ireland is ranked 7th largest aquaculture producer in the EU
  • The Atlantic Ocean is the second largest ocean in the world, covering 20% of the earth’s surface. Out of all the oceans, the Atlantic Ocean is the saltiest
  • The Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean in the world. It’s bigger than all the continents put together
  • Ireland is surrounded by some of the most productive fishing grounds in Europe, with Irish commercial fish landings worth around €200 million annually
  • 97% of the earth’s water is in the ocean
  • The ocean provides the greatest amount of the world’s protein consumed by humans
  • Plastic affects 700 species in the oceans from plankton to whales.
  • Only 10% of the oceans have been explored.
  • 8 million tonnes of plastic enter the ocean each year, equal to dumping a garbage truck of plastic into the ocean every minute.
  • 12 humans have walked on the moon but only 3 humans have been to the deepest part of the ocean.

(Ref: Marine Institute)

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