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Marine Wildlife
#MarineWildlife - There's good news to report from the Galway Atlantaquaria as Ninja the loggerhead turtle is out of intensive care. As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the 'cold stunned' reptile was close to death when she was rescued by staff…
#MarineWildlife - Whale sightings are on the increase in the South East this week as the season tapers off, according to the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG). "As large whales don't keep to our calendar year, this annual south…
#MarineWildlife - Wildlife experts on the Isle of Man have been stumped by the carcass of an otter – a species not native to the island – found on Port Erin beach last Friday (15 January). As BBC News reports,…
#MarineWildlife - Twenty per cent of England's waters are now protected by Marine Conservation Zones (MCZs) after 23 new sites were designated by the UK government, as the Guardian reports. Two sites in the Irish Sea – Allenby Bay on…
#MarineWildlife - A new film on a decade-long study of humpback whales in the Atlantic will have a special screening in Cork later this month, as The Southern Star reports. The Humpback Whales of Cape Verde – which stars some…
#MarineWildlife - Toxic chemicals banned in Europe nearly 30 years ago are still polluting the seas off the continent. And marine scientists fear their continued presence could spell the end for the killer whale and other species in European waters,…
Voyages out as far as the edge of the Continental Shelf on the Atlantic Ocean has produced rare sightings for the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group and this August there is a chance to see the join the crew and…
#MarineWildlife - Marine wildlife fans in the Dublin Bay area will be on the lookout for a group of bottlenose dolphins that have been spotted between Killiney and Dun Laoghaire. It's the first sighting of the species off South Dublin…
#MarineWildlife - The killer whale found beached on a Scottish island last weekend likely died after getting entangled in fishing gear for days, say experts. As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the orca known as Lulu to researchers, who have been…
#MarineWildlife - One of the last remaining members of a unique pod of killer whales has been found dead on a Scottish island. As STV News reports, the orca known as Lulu to marine researchers was found beached on the…
#Biodiversity - Climate change is putting increasing pressure on natural habitats for Irish wildlife, particularly where biodiversity is affected by human action. That's the conclusion of the first National Biodiversity Indicators report, which sought to measure changes affecting marine wildlife…
#MarineWildlife - Marine wildlife welfare groups will received €27,000 out of more than €2.5 million awarded to 140 animal welfare organisations nationwide by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine. Seal Rescue Ireland, based at Courtown Harbour in Co…
#MarineWildlife - Four new Marine Conservation Zones (MCZs) for Northern Ireland have been put forward for consultation, as the Coleraine Times reports. Rathlin, Waterfoot, Outer Belfast Lough and Carlingford Lough are the proposed locations, variously home to marine species from…
#MarineWildlife - 'Poison Ivy' the seal pup is now in good hands after she was found on the streets of Galway by council workers earlier this month. As the Galway Independent reports, the young seal was discovered on the footpath…
#MarineWildlife - On Monday 7 December, Ireland today joined with a number of other countries in a demarche to the government of Japan about its whaling activities. The demarche expresses “serious concern” at Japan's decision to resume whaling in the…
#Whaling - Japan is set to resume whaling for minke whales off Antarctica in the new year in spite of a ruling by the International Court of Justice banning such activity. According to BBC News, Japan says it has taken the…

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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