MARINE LIFE NEWS 2017

Reports of marine wildlife from all around the British Isles, with pollution incidents and conservation initiatives as they affect the fauna and flora of the NE Atlantic Ocean

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9 December 2017

Kemp's Ridley Turtle
Photograph by Dave Hudson Photography

Barely alive but just about holding on, a Kemp's Ridley Turtle, Lepidochelys kempii, cold stunned and stranded on the shore at Holywell Bay, near Newquay, north Cornwall, was discovered on a regular beach clean amongst the ghost nets. The turtle was rehabilitated at the Blue Reef Aquarium, Newquay, where it has started to feed on its way to recovery. The young turtle had a shell length of approx. 25 cm. 

Dave Hudson (Turtle Gallery)
BMLSS Turtles

22 October 2017
Quickly following on was storm "Brian" with gale force winds up to Force 9 around the British Isles with various creatures washed up on the shore, including a large whale under the cliffs at Flamborough, Yorkshire. Portuguese Man-o'-War, Physalia physalis, continue to be washed ashore around the British Isles.

Waves generated by the storm over shallow seas at Shoreham
Photograph by Claire Peters

Other notable strandings occurred included hundreds of young Curled Octopuses, Eledone cirrhosa, (also called the Lesser Octopus with a single line of suckers) found on the shore at Trefor, Llýn Peninsula, north Wales and many areas over a widespread coasts of Wales including Aberystwyth and Telacre as well as the north Devon coast and further afield as well. 
 
"Loads of young Curled Octopuses, Eledone cirrhosa, were washed up at Treforbeach, north Wales, after the storm. I managed to put all the stranded ones I saw back in the water." 
Curled Octopuses are orange when alive and healthy but will lose their colour under stress before they die out of the water. This one was discovered on the shore at Crow Point, Braunton, north Devon.  Octopus changing colour (video link) by Gordon Hughes

Lesser Octopus in Dogbay (UWPhoto)
Beach Stuff: Octopus Interactive Map (Wales)

BMLSS Octopuses

16 October 2017

Gale Force 9 winds at Longships Lighthouse, Land's End, Cornwall
The exposed lighthouse is 35 metres above mean high water
Photographs by Tim Stevens
posted on Coastal Topography facebook

The Irish coast was battered by Violent Storm "Ophelia" (remnants of a Category 3 Hurricane) with sustained winds of 69 mph  and gusts of 97 mph at Roches Point, County Cork, causing extensive damage. The western coast of mainland Britain was also battered by gales and a heavy swell but the waves had receded by the time the storm had reached Scotland. 

Video by Tim Stevens (Link)
Click on the image above for more photographs


12 October 2017
Portuguese Man-o'-War, Physalia physalis, continue to be washed ashore around the British Isles, including as far east as Sussex where they are only rarely seen. 

Photograph by Emma Crowley

October 2017
 

A massive combined jellyfish and plankton bloom wiped out tens of thousands of Atlantic Salmon, Salmo salar,in four fish farms on the west coast and inlets of Ireland at Killary Harbour, Kilkieran Bay and Outer Bertraghboy Bay in Connemara, and in the south-west at Bantry Bay in County Cork. The offending jellyfish were swarms of the small Mauve Stingers, Pelagia noctiluca, (implicated in the previous 2007 swarm and massive Salmon deaths) with the small (body 20 mm) siphonophore (colonial hydrozoan) Muggiaea atlantica

BMLSS Jellyfish
 
 



British Marine Life News 2016
 
 

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