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Displaying items by tag: Irish Whale and Dolphin Group

The Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) is running a new course for marine wildlife tour operators in Galway on 27-28 November.

The two-day course - at the campus of the Galway-Mayo Institue of Technology in Letterfrack - is intended to promote and support responsible marine wildlife tourism, and may provide a basis for a future accreditation scheme for the industry.

The course will be delivered by Dr Simon Berrow and Conor Ryan of the IWDG and is part funded by the Irish Environmental Network under the Department of Environment, Heritage and Local Government's Biodiversity Fund 2010.

Topics covered in the course will include the identification and ecology of marine animals and sea birds, as well as the relevant legislation pertaining to the wildlife tourism industry.

The course fee is €50 per person. Further information is available from Simon Berrow at the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group, Merchants Quay, Kilrush, Co Clare at 086 8545450 or [email protected].

Published in Aquatic Tourism

Sonar activity by Royal Navy submarines may have caused the deaths of up to 35 pilot whales off the coast of Co Donegal at the weekend, an expert has claimed.

Dr Simon Berrow of the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) said that naval activity in the area is one possible cause of the tragedy.

"Naval exercises use a low frequency active sonar which is known to affect whales very badly," he told the Belfast Telegraph. "Basically it affects their sonar and causes a gas embolism, like the ‘bends’."

The Telegraph reports that tests are still being carried out to determine if the whales that beached on Rutland Island, near the fishing village of Burtonport, are the same as a group monitored in Scotland's outer Hebrides the previous weekend.

The pilot whales had reportedly been swimming off Co Donegal for the past week before they were found dead.

The Belfast Telegraph has more on the story (with photos) HERE.

Published in Marine Wildlife

The Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) has recorded two surprisingly large aggregations of minke whales off the southwest coast.

The group reports that regular observer Nick Massett counted a group of eight minke whales off Slea Head in Co Kerry, which is a high count for the area.

But fellow observer Parick Lyne trumped that number with his sighting of at least 16 minke whales at the entrance to Bantry Bay between Bere Island and Sheep Head.

The IWDG said it "can't recall such large numbers of mikle whales in a relatively small area".

The group speculates that an abundance of "whale food" in southwest coastal waters is attracting their attention.

Published in Marine Wildlife

The Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) reports that a killer whale was found stranded in Tullaghan Bay, Co Mayo earlier this month.

A post morten was carried out on the carcass of the female killer whale by Conor Ryan and Alessandro Pierini of the Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology. The good condition of the carcass also allowed the team an opportunity to examine its stomach contents, which did not include any foreign objects.

The killer whale, which was stranded on the beach at Doohoma, was found to be pregnant with a large near-term female calf which was oritented backwards in the birth sac, though there is no obvious connection to the cause of death.

According to the IWDG, it is only the 15th stranding of a killer whale in Ireland since records began, and the seventh in the last 40 years. A pectoral fin was removed for display at the Natural History Museum.

Published in Marine Wildlife

Following the discovery of a dead dolphin in Youghal last week, the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) has called on locals to be watchful for marine mammals in distress.

The common dolphin was found washed up on Clay Castle beach last Wednesday 29 September. The species is a frequent visitor to Youghal, and has even been seen upstream in the river Blackwater.

If anyone in the Youghal area comes across a dead or live stranded dolphin, they are urged to contact their area IWDG members Paradig Wholley (Tel: 023 8838761) or Janet Howley (Tel: 086 3977160) or visit www.iwdg.ie.

Published in Marine Wildlife

Renowned diver Monty Halls is set to present a public talk on his marine animal work filming whales, sharks and dolphins around the world tomorrow night (7 October).

Halls, who has been in Ireland since April making his latest documentary series for the BBC, has been assisting the Irish Whale and Dolphin group (IWDG) with its research on whales, dolphins and basking sharks in Irish waters.

The diver, filmmaker and former Royal Marine, who is also a popular motivational speaker and performance coach, will talk on his experiences filming and diving with marine mammals around the world, and will surely provide some great entertainment.

The talk, part of the Tales of the Whales Lecture Series organised by the IWDG and the Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology (GMIT), begins at 8pm on Thursday 7 October in Lecture Room 1000 at GMIT, Dublin Road, Galway. The event is free and all are welcome to attend.

Published in Marine Wildlife
Page 12 of 12

Royal National Lifeboat Institute (RNLI) in Ireland Information

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) is a charity to save lives at sea in the waters of UK and Ireland. Funded principally by legacies and donations, the RNLI operates a fleet of lifeboats, crewed by volunteers, based at a range of coastal and inland waters stations. Working closely with UK and Ireland Coastguards, RNLI crews are available to launch at short notice to assist people and vessels in difficulties.

RNLI was founded in 1824 and is based in Poole, Dorset. The organisation raised €210m in funds in 2019, spending €200m on lifesaving activities and water safety education. RNLI also provides a beach lifeguard service in the UK and has recently developed an International drowning prevention strategy, partnering with other organisations and governments to make drowning prevention a global priority.

Irish Lifeboat Stations

There are 46 lifeboat stations on the island of Ireland, with an operational base in Swords, Co Dublin. Irish RNLI crews are tasked through a paging system instigated by the Irish Coast Guard which can task a range of rescue resources depending on the nature of the emergency.

Famous Irish Lifeboat Rescues

Irish Lifeboats have participated in many rescues, perhaps the most famous of which was the rescue of the crew of the Daunt Rock lightship off Cork Harbour by the Ballycotton lifeboat in 1936. Spending almost 50 hours at sea, the lifeboat stood by the drifting lightship until the proximity to the Daunt Rock forced the coxswain to get alongside and successfully rescue the lightship's crew.

32 Irish lifeboat crew have been lost in rescue missions, including the 15 crew of the Kingstown (now Dun Laoghaire) lifeboat which capsized while attempting to rescue the crew of the SS Palme on Christmas Eve 1895.

FAQs

While the number of callouts to lifeboat stations varies from year to year, Howth Lifeboat station has aggregated more 'shouts' in recent years than other stations, averaging just over 60 a year.

Stations with an offshore lifeboat have a full-time mechanic, while some have a full-time coxswain. However, most lifeboat crews are volunteers.

There are 46 lifeboat stations on the island of Ireland

32 Irish lifeboat crew have been lost in rescue missions, including the 15 crew of the Kingstown (now Dun Laoghaire) lifeboat which capsized while attempting to rescue the crew of the SS Palme on Christmas Eve 1895

In 2019, 8,941 lifeboat launches saved 342 lives across the RNLI fleet.

The Irish fleet is a mixture of inshore and all-weather (offshore) craft. The offshore lifeboats, which range from 17m to 12m in length are either moored afloat, launched down a slipway or are towed into the sea on a trailer and launched. The inshore boats are either rigid or non-rigid inflatables.

The Irish Coast Guard in the Republic of Ireland or the UK Coastguard in Northern Ireland task lifeboats when an emergency call is received, through any of the recognised systems. These include 999/112 phone calls, Mayday/PanPan calls on VHF, a signal from an emergency position indicating radio beacon (EPIRB) or distress signals.

The Irish Coast Guard is the government agency responsible for the response to, and co-ordination of, maritime accidents which require search and rescue operations. To carry out their task the Coast Guard calls on their own resources – Coast Guard units manned by volunteers and contracted helicopters, as well as "declared resources" - RNLI lifeboats and crews. While lifeboats conduct the operation, the coordination is provided by the Coast Guard.

A lifeboat coxswain (pronounced cox'n) is the skipper or master of the lifeboat.

RNLI Lifeboat crews are required to follow a particular development plan that covers a pre-agreed range of skills necessary to complete particular tasks. These skills and tasks form part of the competence-based training that is delivered both locally and at the RNLI's Lifeboat College in Poole, Dorset

 

While the RNLI is dependent on donations and legacies for funding, they also need volunteer crew and fund-raisers.

© Afloat 2020

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