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Allianz and Afloat - Supporting Irish Boating

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

Marine Wildlife
Sea Eagle Remains Found In Fermanagh
#MarineWildlife - "A sad end to a beautiful bird" is how the Golden Eagle Trust described the news that remains of a white-tailed eagle were found near Lower Lough Erne in Co Fermanagh earlier this month. As RTÉ News reports, Ingar…
Deepwater Whale Strandings Are 'Unusual Mortality Event' – But Sonar Not Confirmed As Culprit
#MarineWildlife - The Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) has issued a joint statement with fellow marine wildlife conservation groups on what's been labelled as "an unusual mortality event" involving Cuvier's beaked whales in Scotland and Ireland. Last month, scientists…
Interactive Video Sheds More Light On Humpback Whale Mystery
#MarineWildlife - The mysteries of Ireland's humpback whales have got the 'TouchCast' treatment as part of RTÉ's new interactive storytelling format. As previously reported on Afloat.ie, scientists have recently tracked first the firm time ever whales travelling between popular spots…
New Zealanders Rush To Aid 200 Whales In Mass Stranding
#MarineWildlife - Locals have been astounded by a mass stranding of up to 200 pilot whales in New Zealand. According to the Irish Independent, volunteers were yesterday (13 February) fighting to save the whales that were still alive after beaching…
Real-Life 'Hunt for Red October' Linked To Beaked Whale Strandings
#MarineWildlife - Could the recent mass strandings of Cuvier's beaked whales in British and Irish waters be connected with the recent real-life 'Hunt for Red October'? Last month scientists in Scotland were baffled by an "unusually large number" of strandings…
Preliminary Results On Stranded Killer Whale
#MarineWildlife - Preliminary results from the post-mortem on the female killer whale that stranded in Waterford last week show no obvious cause of death. As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the five-metre-long female orca was discovered near Tramore last Friday (30…
Inflatable Whales Pop up at Portsmouth International Port for Marine Wildlife Festival
#portsmouthwhales – It's not often children get the chance to put their head in the mouth of a shark, but that's just one exciting adventure they can have at Portsmouth International Port's Marine Wildlife Festival in February. It won't be…
Shark Takes A Bite Out Of Scottish Killer Whale
#MarineWildlife - A conspicuous chunk missing from the tail fluke of a killer whale resident in Scottish waters is evidence of an altercation with a shark, as BBC News reports. The orca, known as John Doe, is one of the…
London Natural History Museum's New Blue Whale Display Has Irish Origins
#MarineWildlife - News emerged this week that Dippy, the famous diplodocus cast at the entrance of London's Natural History Museum, is to be replaced with the skeleton of a blue whale. But amid all the hubbub that this move has…
Killer Whale Strands On Waterford Beach
#MarineWildlife - The Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) reports on a killer whale stranding near Tramore in Co Waterford yesterday (Friday 30 January). The five-metre-long female orca was described as being in "a very fresh condition" and was found…
Loggerhead Loses Fight For Life - But Exploris Has Many More Happy Tales To Tell
#MarineWildlife - Columba, the young loggerhead turtle rescued from near freezing waters on the Donegal coast last week, has died. As the Belfast Telegraph reports, staff at the Exploris aquarium in Portaferry fought hard to save the junior turtle's life…
Secrets Of Ireland's Humpback Whales Revealed
#MarineWildlife - The mystery of where Ireland's humpback whales to go give birth remains – but two whales have been tracked between the Irish coast and feeding grounds in the Arctic for the first time. That's the big news from…
Lookout Urged For Beaches Turtles After Rare Species Find
#MarineWildlife - Seaside visitors are being asked to look out for turtles washed up on the shore after a rare example of the world's smallest sea turtle was discovered in Donegal over Christmas. According to the Irish Independent, the body…
Scottish Scientists At A Loss To Explain Beaked Whale Strandings
#MarineWildlife - An "unusually large number" of Cuvier’s beaked whale strandings in western Scotland in recent weeks has baffled marine scientists, as The Scotsman reports. Five of the rarely seen species were found washed up on Scotland's west coast in…
Close Encounters Of The Whale Kind: What Can You Do To Avoid Danger At Sea?
#MarineWildlife - As protections on endangered whale species help buoy their numbers in the world's oceans, the chances of a blue-water encounter – while still slim – are getting better every year. But at the same time grows the fear…
Enormous Sharks Shut Australian Beaches For The Week
#MarineWildlife - Great white sharks that could "bite a person in half" have seen the closure of a stretch of beaches north of Sydney for more than a week, as TheJournal.ie reports. One shark in particular, thought to be some…

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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