Displaying items by tag: marine wildlife
According to The Irish Times, former Sea Fisheries Protection Authority inspector Kevin Flannery says one of the three common dolphins found between Dingle and Smerwick Harbour since last weekend had a rope around its tail, presumably discarded from a fishing vessel.
He added that while there is no proof of precisely what became of the dolphins, it was "no coincidence" that the incidents occurred while a fleet of mainly Dutch factory fishing ships was spotted off the Blasket Islands.
The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.
#WhaleWatchDay - The 2016 All Island Whale Watch Day takes place on Saturday 27 August as part of Heritage Week.
All are invited to join the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) at any of 20 land-based whale watches on headlands around the Irish coast from 2pm-5pm on the day.
The purpose of Whale Watch Ireland is to raise awareness of the 25 species of cetaceans – whales, dolphins and porpoises – recorded to date in Irish waters, by providing the opportunity to see them in their natural environment.
The event also provides IWDG researchers with a unique snapshot of cetacean activity off the Irish coast.
Though sightings can't be guaranteed, the early arrival of humpback whales among others this year is surely a good omen, especially for those along the south coast between West Cork and Wexford.
And with three-quarters of sites reporting whale or dolphin sightings on last year's Whale Watch Day, the odds are good for next month.
No prior experience is necessary as IWDG volunteers will be on hand to show you how to observe our biggest marine wildlife.
Anyone who wants to come out on the day should bring binoculars or a spotting scope, and dress appropriately for what can be very changeable outdoor conditions.
Details of the 20 headland watch sites are listed below; contact the relevant local organiser for more details or if you wish to help out on the day:
- Clogherhead, Co Louth - Port Oriel Upper Car Park - Breffni Martin, 087 914 5363
- Howth Head, North Co Dublin - Balscadden Car Park - Conal O’ Flanagan, 086 353 7900
- Killiney Bay, South Co Dublin - Vico Road - Brian Glanville, 087 139 0665
- Bray Head, Co Wicklow - Pitch & Putt - Justin Ivory, 087 683 3898
- Hook Head, Co Wexford - Lighthouse - Harm Deenen, 086 348 5013
- Ardmore, Co Waterford - Ram Head Signal Tower - Andrew Malcolm, 087 795 2061
- Galley Head, Co Cork - Lighthouse - Pádraig Whooley, 086 385 0568
- Hog’s Head, Co Kerry - Sea Synergy Centre, Waterville - Lucy Hunt, 087 785 0929
- Valentia Island, Co Kerry - Bray Head Signal Tower - Sean O’Callaghan, 085 776 4918
- Clogher Head, Co Kerry - Lay-by - Nick Massett, 087 673 6341
- Loop Head, Co Clare - Lighthouse - Simon Berrow, 086 854 5450
- Black Head, North Co Clare - Lighthouse - Sandra O’Donovan, 086 606 1869
- Downpatrick Head, Co Mayo - Car park - Aoife Foley, 085 827 6984
- Mullaghmore Head, Co Sligo - Lay-by - Miriam Crowley, 087 617 1377
- Bloody Foreland, Co Donegal - Heights Bar car park - Gareth Doherty, 086 222 3328
- Malin Head, Co Donegal - Signal Tower - Ronan McLaughlin, 086 389 3154
- Ramore Head, Co Antrim - Portrush Coastal Zone - Jim Allen, 078 765 16032
- Portmuck, Co Antrim - Car park - Ian Enlander, 028 933 72724
- Bloody Bridge, Co Down - Car park - Dave Wall, 077 717 62355
Over 300 scientists are meeting in Dublin this week discussing the effects of noise on aquatic life. A public talk on Noise and its impact in the Ocean will be given tonight (Tuesday 12th July) 8 – 9:30pm at the O’Callaghan Alexander Hotel, Fenian Street, off Merrion Square in Dublin.
When people think of pollution they conjure up images of sewage spilling into the oceans, massive oil spills, floating rubbish and maybe even toxic chemicals. Noise pollution, however, is easily left out of such thoughts. Nevertheless, pollution from noise is likely as dangerous to many marine animals as any other type of pollution.
The species, very similar in appearance to the common black-headed gull, is rarely even spotted in Northern Europe, let alone known to breed in these parts.
But it seems mother and child are happy to stay in Northern Ireland's capital and feed on Belfast Lough's bounty of sand eels.
A Life on the Edge survey voyage is an attempt to log the abundance of life on Irelands’ southern shelf edge in September. Irish Whale & Dolphin Gropup's Patrick Lyne is issuing an invitation to join this survey to assist with sailing and logging of sightings and acoustics. This is the fifth year of operation and for the first time Lyne says he will visit the Whittard canyon and adjacent areas in what is one of Europe’s most remote and seldom studied offshore areas.
'We are sailing from Castletownbere in West Cork to Camaret in Brittany and have a few limited places to fill in the outward or return legs', Lyne told Afloat.ie
'We would normally expect to encounter large numbers of fin whale and would hope to encounter blue whales, humpbacks, sperm whales and many other species. It is an opportunity to see many species in a rather short time, in an undisturbed and natural setting' he says.
The issue is currently before the High Court after dredging firms appealed NI Environment Minister Mark Durkan's 2015 enforcement notice against the removal of as much as 1.8 million tonnes of sand from Ireland's largest lake.
And the practice has continued unabated, despite planning permission never being granted for sand dredging on the lough, a protected area for wildlife, said Gregory Jones QC on opening the application for judicial review by Friends of the Earth.
“This issue is bringing the planning system in Northern Ireland into ridicule," the charity's counsel told the court. “This is something one would not expect of the most primitive dictatorship.”
The News Letter has more on the story HERE.
Landscape photographer Richard Creagh was among the lucky few on Monday (27 June) to spot the orca known by the distinctive notch on his dorsal fin – though in more recent times he's also lost a chunk of his tail fluke, most likely to a shark bite.
Creagh, a keen marine wildlife watcher for the last 10 years, said: "Up to now killer whales had always eluded me but today I got to add them to my list, and what a sight it was! I’m still buzzing!"
John Coe's unique orca pod are regular visitors to Irish waters, though he himself was last spotted close to our shores almost three years ago at the Inishkeas in Co Mayo, according to the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group – which is asking the public to watch the seas for any more sightings of the senior cetacean.
A number of Irish companies have been invited to Norway later this year to explore the possibility of collecting abandoned fishing nets and other ocean waste for repurposing in various industries – such as using the rope fibres in reinforced concrete.
They will be led by Macroom E, a company started by Cork County Council to help small and medium businesses make the most of recycling initiatives.
Macroom E is a partner with Circular Ocean, a Europe-wide project hosting a showcase this September on its work to remove waste from the ocean – where plastic and 'ghost nets' remain a hazard to marine wildlife – and turn it into a useful, and profitable, resource.
The Irish Examiner has more on the story HERE.
The plant machinery firm faces likely enforcement action after 40,000 litres of red diesel leaked into Larne Lough via a storm drain – news of which was not made public till days later, according to the Belfast Telegraph.
As the Northern Ireland Environment Agency moved to assure that the spill's impact on marine life would be minimal, conservationists remain concerned as the diesel slick was seen drifting towards The Gobbins, home to many protected seabird species.
Spot checks of affected parts of the Antrim coast have as yet found no injured birds, but Ulster Wildlife maintains that the spill "could have potentially devastating impacts on breeding birds".
The News Letter has more on the story HERE.