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The Explorers Kraken Family Day Celebrates European Maritime Day

4th May 2022
The Marine Institute's Explorers team around the country are planning a Kraken Family Day on the beach for European Maritime Day on the 21st May
The Marine Institute's Explorers team around the country are planning a Kraken Family Day on the beach for European Maritime Day on the 21st May

The Marine Institute's Explorers Education Programme is delighted to announce that they will be hosting five 'Kraken beach events' for families on seashores around the country, celebrating as part of European Maritime Day, on Saturday 21st May at 12pm.

The Explorers team are encouraging families to save the date in May and join them on beaches in counties Mayo, Galway, Kerry, Waterford and Dublin to hear stories about the largest mythical sea monsters known as the Kraken which according to legend are found in the deepest parts of the ocean.

"The Kraken is a legendary sea monster, gigantic in size, that is said to exist off the coasts of Norway and Greenland. It is believed that the Kraken will be swimming past Ireland in May and the Explorers team are on the look-out, to see if it might land on one of the local seashores," explained Dr Noirin Burke, of the Explorers Education Programme.

The Explorers team are encouraging families to save the date in May and join them on beaches in counties Mayo, Galway, Kerry, Waterford and Dublin Cushla Dromgool-Regan, Camden Education

"Celebrating our local seashore on European Maritime Day, we will be running walks and talks, litter pick-ups, and encouraging families to join us in creating sand sculptures of the scariest and largest cephalopod species. Spot prizes funded will be provided to children for creating the best Kraken sand sculptures," Dr Burke added.

European Maritime Day takes place all around Europe and aims to raise awareness and engage people in learning about our ocean, as well as building a network to encourage the development of a sustainable blue economy.

Ms Patricia Orme, Corporate Services Director of the Marine Institute, welcomed the Explorers Kraken Family Day. The day is a great way to support and encourage families to learn about the marine environment, and understand our impact on the ocean, as well as promoting the development of our blue economy in Ireland, and beyond."

The Explorers Kraken Family Day on the beach will take place at 12pm on Saturday the 21st May in the following locations: Old Head Beach in Mayo, on Grattan Beach in Galway, Waterville Beach in Kerry, Tramore West in Waterford (run in conjunction with the Bealtaine Living Earth Festival), and Dollymount Strand in Dublin.

Families are encouraged to book their attendance in advance here.

The Explorers Education Programme is funded by the Marine Institute, Ireland's state agency for marine research, technology development and innovation. Team

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Marine Wildlife Around Ireland One of the greatest memories of any day spent boating around the Irish coast is an encounter with marine wildlife.  It's a thrill for young and old to witness seabirds, seals, dolphins and whales right there in their own habitat. As boaters fortunate enough to have experienced it will testify even spotting a distant dorsal fin can be the highlight of any day afloat.  Was that a porpoise? Was it a whale? No matter how brief the glimpse it's a privilege to share the seas with Irish marine wildlife.

Thanks to the location of our beautiful little island, perched in the North Atlantic Ocean there appears to be no shortage of marine life to observe.

From whales to dolphins, seals, sharks and other ocean animals this page documents the most interesting accounts of marine wildlife around our shores. We're keen to receive your observations, your photos, links and youtube clips.

Boaters have a unique perspective and all those who go afloat, from inshore kayaking to offshore yacht racing that what they encounter can be of real value to specialist organisations such as the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) who compile a list of sightings and strandings. The IWDG knowledge base has increased over the past 21 years thanks in part at least to the observations of sailors, anglers, kayakers and boaters.

Thanks to the IWDG work we now know we share the seas with dozens of species who also call Ireland home. Here's the current list: Atlantic white-sided dolphin, beluga whale, blue whale, bottlenose dolphin, common dolphin, Cuvier's beaked whale, false killer whale, fin whale, Gervais' beaked whale, harbour porpoise, humpback whale, killer whale, minke whale, northern bottlenose whale, northern right whale, pilot whale, pygmy sperm whale, Risso's dolphin, sei whale, Sowerby's beaked whale, sperm whale, striped dolphin, True's beaked whale and white-beaked dolphin.

But as impressive as the species list is the IWDG believe there are still gaps in our knowledge. Next time you are out on the ocean waves keep a sharp look out!

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