was discovered alive in a rockpool on Worm's
Head, the "wurm"-shaped rock island connected at low tide by a causeway
to the western end of the Gower peninsular at the southern end of Rhossili
Bay in south Wales. By comparing the size of the periwinkle
in the pool the viewer can see the size is about 100 mm in diameter. The
jellyfish has been identified as the Blue
Jellyfish, Cyanea lamarckii. Inverted the jellyfish was
white underneath. It quickly righted itself.
to a higher resolution image
the mixed rocks, another much larger jellyfish was also washed up dead.
to a higher resolution image
Distemper Virus has been identified as
the cause of a new increased total of 461 Common
Phoca vitulina, carcasses
tested in Denmark, with a further 150 in Sweden and dead seals also recovered
on the shores of the Netherlands.
Report for 2002
dead seals should be reported to the marine mammals stranding telephone
by the Natural History Museum on 0207 942 5155 (24 hr answerphone).
Solstice 2:11 pm.
Beaked Whale, Ziphius cavirostris,
was stranded alive on the south end of the beach at Ostend, Happisburgh,
Norfolk, eastern England. A rescue attempt was made in the evening by the
Norfolk coastguard and RSPCA, but sadly the whale beached and died overnight.
stranded whale is an adult male, with two protruding teeth, pale head and
beak and shows extensive scarring over the dorsal surface, particularly
between the blow hole and dorsal fin. This stranding is unusual for a deep
water whale which on the rare occasions when they are washed up on western
British coasts they are in a badly decomposed condition.
estimated 30 plus Basking
Sharks, Cetorhinus maximus,
were seen this morning between Longships and Brisons off the south-west
Barnacles, Lepas anatifera, are
washed up on a plank at Borth-y-Gêst, near Portmadoc, north Wales
(Tremadoc Bay, north bit of Cardigan Bay), and these attracted the curiosity
of the public.
by William Galvin (RSPCA)
June 2002, five Atlantic White-sided
Dolphins were seen close inshore in Uyea
Sound , Unst in the Shetland Isles. Unst is the most northerly island in
Britain. Uyea is a small island to the south of Unst separated by the Uyea
and Skuda Sounds.
of the Atlantic White-sided Dolphin 1998 - 2000
extremely unusual record of a live stranding of a female Atlantic White-sided
Dolphin, Lagenorhynchus acutus,
on the sandy beach outside of Newhaven harbour, East Sussex occurred in
the early evening. The tail muscle was in such poor condition that the
experts on site decided on euthanasia. They were also able to confirm the
identity of this deep water northern species that is a rare discovery in
the English Channel. There was no hourglass pattern like a Common
Dolphin with the yellow zone behind the dorsal
fin and the distinctive patterns could be seen clearly. The
English record on the BMLSS records occurred of a specimen washed up
dead on the north Devon coast in 2000. This species is seen occasionally
around the Shetland Isles but other reports are exiguous.
of the Atlantic White-sided Dolphin in the NE Atlantic (Link)
Link (for CD-ROM only)
americanus, was discovered captured by a fishing vessel on a boat out
of Selsey, West Sussex. A few specimens have been caught before in the
approaches to Southampton Water.
from 2001 (Link) on the Belgian coast
crab fisherman found a specimen of the pelagic crab called the 'Sargassum'
or 'Gulf Weed Crab,' Planes minutus
on a float, which was covered in barnacles.
The float was found in the Big Russel between Herm and Sark to the east
of Guernsey, Channel Islands. This crab is rarely recorded from the English
bodies of more than 310 Common Seals,
vitulina, have been washed up on the Danish and Swedish coasts, raising
fears of an epidemic of the highly contagious and usually fatal
Distemper Virus. The origin of the the
outbreak on the Kattegat and Skagerrak coast of Denmark and south Sweden
prior to the breeding season is the same place as the 1988 epidemic which
quickly spread to the east coast of England and killed about 2000 seals
in the Wash (60% of the population).
virus causes pregnant seals to abort their pups, pneumonia and nervous
system abnormalities including convulsions.
National News Report
Oceans Day was first declared as 8th June at the Earth Summit in Rio de
Janeiro in 1992. Events will occur all
around the world on and around this day.
Oceans Day offers the opportunity for people in many parts of Britain and
around the world to increase their understanding of the marine environment
and wildlife of the oceans.
Oceans Day Events page
on the Cornish Wildlife Mailing List
rarely discovered Sowerby's
Beaked Whale, Mesoplodon bidens, was
washed up dead on Praa Sands, Mount's Bay, Cornwall. Nick
Tregenza and David Ball identified it as Sowerby's
Beaked Whale, an adult female, about 4 metres in length.
freshly dead mammal was hauled with some difficulty above the high tide
to enable the Natural History Museum to take samples which will become
part of the scientific collection. This only the fourth record of this
whale from Cornwall. One of the previous records was of a live specimen
that was rescued.
This whale is rarely discovered
and rarely seen alive long enough for a positive identification because
it usually inhabits deep waters, usually seen breaching the surface of
the sea over the 1000 metre isobath. Rarely is it possible to differentiate
which species of beaked whale from these brief unexpected encounters, but
Sowerby's is the commonest of the four species of ziphids (=Ziphiidae)
that live regularly in the seas around the British Isles.
Mammals of the English Channel Smart Group
year about June, several young male Sperm Whales end up on the Belgian
and Dutch shores. These individuals seem to separate from the females and
calves to look for
Dutch water-police spotted a Sperm Whale,
of about 15 metres in the Westerschelde (a large estuary that finally ends
up in Antwerp). The animal was swimming the wrong way and surfaced in the
"Buitenhaven" and later the "Sloehaven" of Vlissingen.
to a combined rescue operation of the EHBZ-team Zeeland and the EHBZ-team
Belgium the animal was guided trough the fairway to deeper waters. About
midnight the Sperm Whale was spotted close to Zeebrugge (Belgium).
and Map (Zeehondencreche [Netherlands Seal Rehabilitation and Research
water. If they change direction and arrive in the shallow waters north
of Belgium and the Netherlands, scientists believe that the navigation
system of these animals is disturbed, as they are used to navigating in
deeper oceanic waters. There is also little food for Sperm Whales in this
part of the North Sea, so they end up stressed and malnourished. Stranded
animals on the Belgian and Dutch shores can seldom be refloated.
Reports from 1937 & 1997 (pics
Rehabilitation in Netherlands and Denmark
Chanonry Point and Fort George, near Inverness, Scotland, two Bottle-nosed
truncatus, attacked and killed a young Harbour
Porpoise, Phocoena phocoena. The
sustained attack lasted from around 14.30 until 15.00 hours. The tide was
just beginning to rise when the two dolphins, over on the Ardersier side
of the Chanonry narrows began to chase and catapult a juvenile porpoise
out of the water. The body of the
floated past Chanonry towards Inverness, where the dolphins eventually
lost interest in it and began to forage for food in the tidal current.
OCEANS DAY Exhibition at Coronation
was one of the leaders in the United Kingdom when it presented an Exhibition
celebrating the official World Oceans Day. The event
took place on Saturday 1 June 2002in
on Coronation Green (TQ
216050), adjacent to the footbridge over the
Adur, with the start of the Adur Festival.
ON THE IMAGE FOR MORE INFORMATION
World Oceans Day Picture Portfolio 2002 (by
World Oceans Day 2002 Programme of Events
World Oceans Day 2001 Report
World Oceans Day Picture Portfolio
Oceans Day Smart Group
Wind Sailor were also discovered washed
up further east on the shore at Kimmeridge Bay, Dorset.
9 June 2002
of Velella velella, the By-the
Wind Sailor were discovered by Nick
Darke on Porthcothan
Beach, Cornwall. They are freshly dead, the float having the animals or
at least fragments of the soft tissue, still present. They are probably
all along the north coast, especially at Perranporth, so I will be interested
to have an idea of the maximum density per sq. metre. The last really big
incursion was in June/July 1981 when
Bere counted 150 to 200 per sq. metre, as
they came in on the tide (i.e. not heaped up in catchment areas) and he
estimated 100,000 for the stretch of shore at Bude.
of Velella are washed up on the north Devon strandline
from Westward Ho!, Croyde and Woolacombe.
May 2002 thousands of Velella
velella were also washed up along
the tide line on the beach at Nicholston Burrows on the Gower peninsular,
June 2002 there were millions of Velella
velella washed ashore on Rhosilli beach, a west facing beach
at the end of the Gower peninsula in south Wales.
of dead, dried Velella on the beach at Caswell Bay, South Gower,
with quite a few live ones bobbing around in the surf too on 10
June 2002 the swathes (thousands) of Velella
looked like a 300 metres band of oil washed up on the shore at Freshwater
West, Pembrokeshire, SW Wales, from below the car park to Little Furzenip.
There was a distinct smell of rotting sea life.
June 2002 many washed up Velella were
discovered hidden amongst the pebbles on Aberystwyth south beach, west
Wales on the Cardigan Bay coast.
June 2002 millions of Velella had been
washed up on the sandy beach of Porth Ty'n Twyn, on the south-west coast
of Anglesey (Ynys Môn) between the small towns of Aberffraw and Rhosneigr.
The Velella formed five separate strandlines and the stink of the
decaying animals was horrendous.
June 2002 I have had two reports of hundreds
of Velella velella being washed
up on the South of the Isle of Man, one report from Scarlett Point and
another at Chapel Bay, Port St. Mary.
June 2002, Graham Mercer and the Harbourmaster
at Portpatrick, reported thousands of Velella
from the inner and harbour at Portpatrick, Dumfries & Galloway,
Scotland. This is the most northerly record so far of the current strandings
and they were not known to the local fishermen.
June 2002, smaller numbers of Velella
were washed up here on the Isle of Cumbrae. This appears to be the first
record in the Firth of Clyde (which has been fairly well studied since
the 1880s at least!).
2002 found thousands of Velella were
washing in on Kilmory Bay, Sound of Jura, Argyll, Scotland. There was a
lot of foam along the tideline at the time and they were quite fresh. This
is a south-west facing bay inshore of Islay and Jura in the western islands
and the furthest north record for 2002.
numbers of dead Velella along strandline of sandy beach at Kilmore
Quay (SE Ireland). Estimated to be in excess of 300 Velella
per metre of strandline for about 50 metres (= 15000). They were
a bit dried out so must have been there for a few days.
first dead Velella is washed up on a Sussex beach at Bognor rocks.
This is the most easterly record so far up the English Channel.
by John Knight (West Sussex
of Velella (notes)
vulgaris, was caught three quarters of a mile at Chapel Point off
Mevagissey, Cornwall, and presented to Mevagissey
Harbour Marine Aquarium.
was also caught close inshore in a Pilchard net and it is one of two of
these attractive fish on display in the aquarium.
12 May 2002
male Cuckoo Wrasse,
bimaculatus, caught by a boat angler off Littlehampton is an unusual
record from off the Sussex coast. There is a rocky dive site known as the
Waldrons where these wrasse occur regularly.
by Bob Squires (Southwick)
pod of six Killer Whales,
orca, are seen from the Fetlar ferry in the Bluemull ‘triangle’. (Fetlar
is an island in the north-east of the Shetland Isles.) They were probably
the same pod that was seen in March.
the swarms of jellyfish it is does not come
as a surprise that a predatory Leatherback
Turtle, Dermochelys coriacea, was
seen by Ian and Joy Olford
50 metres from the shore off Polruan, Cornwall (SX
125 511). The jellyfish Rhizostoma
octopus was seen nearby and jellyfish are the principal diet
of these turtles.
Conservation Society have produced a laminated Turtle Advice Sheet
by DEFRA). The guide contains reports numbers and advice.
on Colin Speedie's Basking Shark survey last
week we were almost continually among the jellyfish Rhizostoma
octopus (from Lands End to Fowey, Cornwall), some areas had
particularly dense aggregations of them.
Black (Devon Biodiversity Records Centre)
of Rhizostoma octopus
were seen between Falmouth and the Lizard, Cornwall.
have been reports of jellyfishes from the Cornish and Devon coasts,
including Rhizostoma octopus
at 50 cm diameter with a purple rim to the bell stranded near the swimming
pool at Devil's Point (Western Kings) on the Plymouth foreshore on 7
White (of Devon Wildlife Trust) saw lots of
at Church Cove on the Lizard, Cornwall, on 5
report arrived via Brixham Coastguard from a member of the public; that
a large jellyfish (one metre across) had been found in the Imperial Recreation
Ground in Exmouth, Devon, on 6 May 2002.
numbers of Rhizostoma
octopus are reported from the Manacles rocks, off south Cornwall,
by by Roger Dadds, (Plymouth Sound SAC) on
numbers of jellyfish up to one metre in diameter are also reported from
off Chesil beach and around Portland Bill, and also the Erme estuary and
Bigbury Bay (south Devon). It seems this is a year of exceptional abundance
for Rhizostoma octopus.
June 2002 the Rhizostoma
octopus had reached as far east as Sussex with one specimen of
nearly a metre in diameter washed up at Shoreham
Nature Notes (Spring 2002) for Shoreham Beach Nature Reports
least 15 Rhizostoma octopus
jellyfish, ranging in size between about 10 cm to 60 cm in size were washed
up on Studland beach in Dorset.
Porpoise was washed up with the umbilical
cord attached on Rozel beach, Normandy. It was a female and measured 92
cm long. Photo
baby Harbour Porpoise,
phocoena, is washed up alive on Pagham beach, Sussex, but dies shortly
Information on the Sponge Crab
Crab, Dromia personata,
was brought in by a Mevagissey (south Cornwall) inshore fisherman caught
in shallow water. This was the first time this crab had been seen by the
fisherman of 16 years experience. It is a rather distinctive crab the shape
and size of a tennis ball and the light brown crab is covered in hairs
which gives it a velvety appearance. As befits its common name it is not
very active in the Mevagissey Harbour
Aquarium. One of its distinguishing characters that enabled me
(Andy Horton) to make the identification from a
verbal description are the claws on each of the legs. This crab is rare
throughout its range in British seas, found in the English Channel and
as far north as Cardigan Bay on the west coast.
Aquarium is a Grade I Listed building and its tanks are renewed with fresh
seawater twice daily which makes it an ideal environment for keeping crabs
and other large crustaceans which appreciate
regular water changes of this frequency. Mevagissey Aquarium houses the
cabrilla, caught in June 1996, and an attractive Boar Fish,
Whear reports at least 150 Common
Dolphins, Delphinus delphis, three miles off Coverack, Cornwall.
They covered an acre of sea, and many were leaping around his boat. He
also saw one Basking Shark, Cetorhinus
the first of this year.
toll of dead cetaceans on Cornish shores this
year is 114 so far.
unusual discovery over Easter was three Snapping
Prawns, Alpheus macrocheles,
under boulders in Kimmeridge Bay, Dorset. These are listed as very
scarce in Hayward and Ryland, though I suspect
"rarely seen" would be a better description. They were about 30 mm
long, a lovely yellowy-orange colour and two were berried.
small patch of loose tunicate-covered flint rocks with small bits of chalk
at Lancing beach, Sussex, proved
unusually rich in small rockpool life at the
very low tide (TQ
018 034). The
discoveries included a Pimplet
Anemone, Anthopleura ballii, another anemone
species that has never been recorded this far east before.
- 24 March 2002
the female whales gave birth as the lifeboatmen preventing it from beaching.
authentic report, the calf was bodily lifted by a farmer and put back into
pod of between 30 and 40 Pilot
Globicephala melas, became stranded, or nearly stranded,
at near Camp in North in Tralee Bay, County Kerry, Ireland, and were prevented
from beaching and helped back out to sea. 18 of these whales (actually
dolphins with a bottle-shaped head) perished, but many were coaxed back
into the sea on the first day. On the following day, 10 to 12 whales were
spotted the shallow water of Fenit Harbour, but they did not become beached
and the Fenit lifeboatmen were able to escort them back into deeper water.
pod of six Killer Whales,
orca, are seen from the Fetlar ferry in the Shetland Isles. (Fetlar
is an island in the north-east of the Shetlands.)
twenty dead Lesser Octopuses, Eledone cirrhosa, were
scattered over a stretch of about 200 metres of Killiney beach, Co. Kerry,
Equinox at 19:03 GMT (UT).