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Marine Wildlife
Celtic Mist will be open for tours this Sunday 20 May at Dublin's Grand Cana; Dock
#CelticMist - Join the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group at Dublin’s Grand Canal Dock this Sunday 20 May to celebrate before its research vessel Celtic Mist embarks on a historic marine wildlifearine wildlife expedition to Iceland. As Coast Monkey reports,…
Dolphins playing inside Dun Laoghaire Harbour. It does the heart good
The National Yacht Club's Mal Nowlan couldn't believe his eyes on Saturday afternoon when a pod of dolphins came into the harbour to play around his boat. 'I was calibrating my RIB’s compass when DBSC’s Committee Boat 'Freebird' came into the harbour…
Preventing Plastic Pollution on Waterways: Infographic
You don’t have to look far to see a scary story involving plastic, whether that story involves a whale washing up to shore as a result of ingesting too much plastic or a video that shows a turtle having a…
Plastic pollution is affecting marine life in even the most remote parts of the Atlantic Ocean
Sinn Féin MEP Liadh Ní Riada has warned there will be more plastic waste in our oceans than fish by 2050, according to a UN report. The Ireland South MEP gave the stark warning as she addressed the European Parliament…
 The first deepwater INFOMAR survey of 2018, is to map the seabed in the region of the Labadie and Cockburn Banks, south of the Celtic Sea.
#MarineScience - Marine Institute's RV Celtic Explorer departed Galway yesterday for the first deepwater INFOMAR survey of 2018 to map the seabed in the region of the Labadie and Cockburn Banks, south of the Celtic Sea. These areas are of ecological…
'Ireland’s Deep Atlantic' the first of a new series begins tomorrow, Sunday, 22nd April at 9.30pm on RTÉ One
#MarineWildlife - Ireland's Deep Atlantic is a new documentary series that airs on RTÉ One this weekend. Ireland’s Deep Atlantic sees underwater cameraman Ken O’Sullivan embark on a series of voyages out into the open North Atlantic in search of…
The new humpback whale as spotted near Inchydoney on Saturday 31 March
#MarineWildlife - Amid a flurry of activity off the Bear Peninsula in West Cork last week was the discovery of a new humpback whale visitor to Irish waters. Using images captured by marine mammal observation officer Patrick Lyne near Inchydoney…
The Neprophs survey team on the RV Celtic Voyager this month
#MarineScience - A new survey sampling Nephrops larvae from the area west of the Aran Islands is currently being conducted for the first time aboard the RV Celtic Voyager. “Nephrops are more commonly known as Dublin Bay prawn, Norway lobster…
There was great excitement and media interest in the sighting of killer whales off West Kerry over a month ago.
The prognosis for killer whales in Europe is dire, according to the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group. There was great excitement and media interest in the sighting of killer whales off West Kerry over a month ago. The IWDG has…
Irish Deep Water Coral Reefs Changing Faster Than Previously Thought, Says New Research
#MarineScience - One of Ireland’s deep water coral reefs is changing at a rate of some 20% over four years, faster than previously thought. That’s according to new research published by Dr Aaron Lim of the Marine Geology Research Group…
The departure this day last week of cargoship Burhou I in Wicklow Port, however take a closer look and spot the head of seemingly 'Sammy the Seal'. The grey seal due to food-related antics!... has become a local celebrity and beyond given coverage has gone 'viral' in recent years.
#CoastalNotes - During Afloat's visit to Wicklow Port this day last week, seemingly Sammy the Seal made a fleeting appearance when alongside a departing cargoship, writes Jehan Ashmore. The departure that afternoon of Burhou-I involved the curious 'Sammy' or a…
The two killer whales spotted by the IWDG’s Nick Massett in Dingle Bay on Monday 5 March
#MarineWildlife - Two killer whales spotted feeding off the Blasket Islands earlier this week have been identified as members of a unique pod from Scotland. “Killer whale sightings in any Irish waters are rare events, and they seem to be…
Project To Tackle ‘Ghost Fishing’ Scourge Coming To Ireland This Summer
#Fishing - Marine wildlife worldwide continues to fall victim to ‘ghost fishing’, trapped in lost or abandoned fishing gear. The situation prompted a group of experienced divers, who often come across discarded nets and other debris, to form the Ghost…
Under the 'Northern Lights' of the Arctic Circle, Saga Pearl II which on this Valentine's Day afternoon is to depart Portsmouth, UK on a 15-night cruise including whale-watching off Norway. AFLOAT adds the small cruiseship of 18,581grt is currently at the same berth previously occupied by a heavy-lift crane barge as depicted in today's FerryNews piece: 'Investment of £1bn to boost UK ferry industry'
#CruiseLiners - On this Valentine’s Day the yacht-like cruiseship Saga Pearl II is due to depart Portsmouth International Port (PIP) at 17.00 this afternoon to see the Northern Lights in Norway. It won’t just be guests on board hoping to see…
The Shannon Dolphin Centre in Kilrush
#MarineScience - The Irish Whale and Dolphin Group’s Shannon Dolphin Project is seeking research assistants from May-September 2018 based in Kilrush, Co Clare. Research assistants will be required to conduct monitoring surveys from dolphin-watching tour boats, spend a considerable amount…
A juvenile basking shark, a species vulnerable to commercial trawling and gill netting
#MarineWildlife - Basking sharks, stingrays and seaweeds are among nearly 50 species of marine flora and fauna faced with extinction in Ireland’s waters, according to a new report from the Irish Wildlife Trust (IWT). Protecting Our Ocean Wealth outlines 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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