Displaying items by tag: marine wildlife
#BlueWhale - The skeleton of a blue whale beached in Ireland that's to be the centrepiece of London's Natural History Museum has been held together by old newspapers for more than 80 years, it has emerged.
Afloat.ie previously noted the Irish origins of the giant marine mammal remains that were recovered from the Wexford coast 125 years ago – and is next year set to replace Dippy the diplodocus in the London museum's atrium.
But as Kent Online reports, it was only recently discovered that parts of the massive skeleton were being held together with copies of the Kent Messenger newspaper from the 1930s.
Staff responsible for the careful reconstruction of the blue whale specimen found dated newsprint within the plaster-like material that had been used as 'stuffing' to pack out and hold together its bones.
According to a museum spokesperson, it indicates strong connections between the English county and the workers in London who prepared the whale for display.
Kent Online has more on the story HERE.
The deep cut, likely inflicted by a visiting boat's propeller, was noticed yesterday (Friday 3 June) by fans of the popular marine wildlife attraction who's delighted locals and visitors alike in Dingle for more than 30 years.
However, Fungie lovers have been urged not to panic – as the famous bottlenose has healed well from similar injuries before, and has already returned to frolicking with boaters in Dingle Harbour.
The Irish Examiner has more on the story HERE.
One of a species never before recorded in Irish waters in the 25 years since the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) was formed, the 20ft juvenile whale was photographed from a pilot boat at the mouth of the lough at the Helly Hunter Rocks on Sunday 29 May.
It's thought that it may be the same individual from the arctic species spotted off Cornwall in mid May, following a previous bowhead sighting at the Scilly Isles in February.
The Celtic Mist joined the hunt yesterday (Tuesday 31 May) on its circumnavigation of Ireland and failed to make any sighting, though bowhead whales are known for being difficult to spot due to their lack of a dorsal fin.
The IWDG has much more on this story HERE.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, Ivy was no more than three weeks old when she was picked up by council workers on a Salthill footpath last December.
But it was back to Salthill she went this past weekend when Ivy was released into the wild at Ladies Beach, according to Galway Bay FM.
According to RTÉ News, the Naval Service were only happy to oblige when contacted by Dingle Oceanworld about the possibility of releasing Una and Tallula.
The former was nursed back to health at the Dingle marine wildlife sanctuary after she was found at Barryroe in West Cork last December.
She was joined on the OPV by Tallula, a turtle washed up in Cornwall who was treated at Newquay's Blue Reef Aquarium and flown into Dingle especially for release.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, LÉ Róisín and its 57-strong crew are headed to the Mediterranean as the first deployment for the Naval Service this year under Operation PONTUS.
Celtic Mist will depart Fenit, Co Kerry next Saturday 7 May with a team of IWDG members and marine science experts on an almost three-month circumnavigation of Ireland, first heading north along the Wild Atlantic Way and around to the Irish Sea, calling on Dublin on 7 June to mark the 25th anniversary of the Irish Government's official declaration of this island's waters as a sanctuary for cetaceans.
The declaration came only three months after it was proposed by the then newly formed IWDG, and both have been instrumental in raising awareness of the bounty of marine wildlife in Irish waters.
Though berths on the voyage are filling fast, everyone will have the opportunity to participate by assisting in outreach events along the cruise route, or by tracking its progress online. Details on how to get involved can be found on the IWDG website HERE.
Along the way passengers on Celtic Mist may be treated to some of the incredible wildlife the sanctuary was created to protect, such as humpback whales – a number of which were spotted on an early visit to West Kerry earlier this month, likely attracted by schools of sand eels, as the IWDG reports.
In other marine wildlife news, locals near a beach close to Ballyshannon in Co Donegal have complained after a whale carcass was left rotting on rocks three days after it was reported to authorities.
According to the Irish Mirror, successive high tides had failed to shift the 25ft minke whale, though Donegal County Council says it is arranging for the animal's disposal.
Wild Cities premieres on Sunday 8 May at 6.30pm with a visit to Galway, where cameras follow wild salmon leaping the weir, cygnets taking their first dip at the mouth of the Corrib and otters frolic in the city's canals.
The following week the programme takes a trip to Dublin, meeting frogs in back gardens and herring gulls on city centre rooftops, while subsequent episodes in Cork and Belfast will reveal herons begging for scraps from market stalls, basking seals and darting kingfishers among many others.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the tiny seal no more than three weeks old was found by Galway City Council workers on a footpath in Salthill.
After emergency care by local vets and wildlife volunteers, the pup was moved to the Seal Rescue Ireland sanctuary in Wexford, whose staff kept with their comic-book theme by naming her Poison Ivy.
It was touch and go for the little one in the weeks and months that followed, though as The Dodo reports, Poison Ivy is now all grown up and fighting fit, enjoying the company of the marine wildlife sanctuary's other young seals.
But it's bath time that the little attention seeker lives for, as this video shows.
The Dodo has much more on the story HERE.
"You could see the inside of their huge mouths very clearly under the water as they were feeding," Power told RTÉ News of the three-hour breakfast. "They swam close to the rocks going in circles. It was incredible."
The Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) reports that another sighting was made at the same time off Slea Head in Co Kerry – adding to a list of inshore sightings along the South West coast since 31 March, when the first basking shark spotting of 2016 was reported off West Cork.
And the sheer size of this group is surely a boost for the 'shark park' initiative mooted for the Wild Atlantic Way last summer.
VIDEO: A close encounter with basking sharks off the Clare coast.https://t.co/d3ozNFg8RI— RTÉ News (@rtenews) April 12, 2016
#DopeyDick - A killer whale who gained notoriety after swimming up the River Foyle in the late 1970s has been rediscovered enjoying his retirement off the west coast of Scotland, as the Derry Journal reports.
It's more than 38 years since the orca astounded the people of Derry by swimming up the estuary and hanging around the city for a number of days, earning the name 'Dopey Dick' for shrugging off attempts to lure him back to the safety of open water.
His whereabouts thereafter were unknown -- till cetacean experts with the Hebridean Whale and Dolphin Trust compared old photographs of his Derry visit with more recent images of the unique orca community that makes its home off the western Scottish coast, and identified a positive match.
Comet, as the orca is properly known, is estimated to be at least 58 years old, double the usual life expectancy for the species.
But that's not so surprising for the orca pod referred to as the 'West Coast Community', which has been a regular visitor to Irish waters over the years, and has interested marine wildlife specialists for decades due to its "evolutionary significant" qualities.
Sadly that group's numbers have been dwindling, with fellow orca Lulu becoming the latest victim after its believed she was entangled in fishing gear early this year, as previously reported on Afloat.ie.