Seashore: Southwick to Worthing, including Shoreham-by-Sea and Lancing
In the entrance
to Shoreham Harbour, there are artificial rocky*
shores at Kingston Beach near the Lighthouse,
and at the Old Fort beach on the other side of the
Adur. (* Larvikite,
a type of syenite). These new rock groynes have now been extended the full
length of Shoreham Beach and as far as Lancing Beach Green (May
Address for sending in wildlife reports from the lower Adur valley
a selection will be included and only reports with the name of the reporter
NEWS AND EVENTS
low 1.3 metre tide revealed a small expanse of sand on Shoreham beach and
the area of beach by Widewater Lagoon. A
few, at least three at a time, Sanderlings
were feeding, repeatedly stabbing their small black beaks into the sand
or on top of the sand for snippets. On the fine shingle (gravel),
at least eight Turnstones
were running around, their camouflage making them blend in with the background,
but their whereabouts were given away as they moved.
sand and rock shore at a low spring tide opposite Brooklands
Boating Lake produced a few interesting critters under rocks. Another
vernalis, was discovered, scampering
away and then burying itself rapidly and Daisy
pedunculatus, in white and grey with a strange undulating appearance
because of its position in a crevice, and a large Velvet
Swimming Crab, Necora
puber, were noteworthy. Fish included a few 5-Bearded
Rocklings, Ciliata mustela.
more common crustaceans included small
Hermit Crabs, Pagurus bernhardus,
and Squat Lobsters, Galathea squamifera,
handful of small Long-legged Spider Crabs,
rostrata, and both species of Porcelain
woman is stung by a Weever Fish,
vipera, whilst bathing off Shoreham Beach.
of the Weever
beach between Worthing and Lancing seems an unpromising area for rockpooling
but it consistently provides a variety of some of the less usual small
fish and crabs found between the tides. Katherine
Tacita French discovered a young first year
lumbriciformis, which is unusual this
far east up the English Channel.
were unusual crabs as well as more common crustaceans
like small Common Hermit Crabs, Pagurus
bernhardus, and Squat
Lobsters, Galathea squamifera. The
itinerary of discoveries on the low spring tide
can be found on the bucket page.
Anemones on this shore included at least a handful seen of Daisy
pedunculatus, (with mauve/purple columns), and Snakelocks
Anemones Anemonia viridis,
which both reach their most easterly shore distribution at Lancing.
Bucket of Critters
the pool of water left by the receding tide underneath the middle groyne
on Kingston Beach, a Snakelocks
viridis, expanded its stinging tentacles. This anemone is unusual
on this shore and reaches its easterly point of distribution on the northern
coast of the English Channel at Shoreham. The pools also contained at least
half a dozen small first year Corkwing
melops, which are a month earlier than usual between the tides.
Port Open Day
Fish Festival display included a Triggerfish,
capriscus, caught off Sussex the previous
day, with a handful of other fish including
Rays, one large Plaice and some
invertebrate life with crustaceans that included Lobsters,
Swimming Crabs, Common Hermit Crabs, Shore Crabs and
molluscs including live
(photographed above) swam around occasionally rising to the surface and
expelling water from its mouth. It did not appear to be in discomfort and
looked in a healthy condition.
just after nine in the morning a single Peregrine Falcon flew around
the Power Station Chimney and there were hundreds of Moon
Jellyfish, Aurelia aurita, in
the canal section of the harbour.
a batch of low tides started today, the excessive
amount of seaweed washed up on the shingle after the recent gales does
not make rockpooling or end of season shrimping
an attractive prospect.
ADUR WORLD OCEANS
was one of the leaders in the United Kingdom when it presented an Exhibition
celebrating the official World Oceans Day. It was
held in the large marquee on
Green overlooking the River
the attendance on a sunny day (21.4° C)
at 3,500 (estimates of attendances at other events have been overstated).
the sheer number of people it made it impossible to speak to people as
much as I would like. There were lots of interesting conversations and
I was surprised about the number of people who stepped on a Weever
Fish last summer, at least half a dozen, and it was lucky we had
a small specimen on display so people could have a look at the offender.
most interesting discovery was an unidentified fossil found on Shoreham
beach and brought in by a young girl. This is illustrated on the right.
fossil is part of a test (internal shell) of a sea urchin formed about
85 million years ago. The long club-like spines have broken off leaving
the base only. The exact species has not been established yet.
World Oceans Day 2004 Image Portfolio (by Ray Hamblett)
30 minute spell of push-netting for shrimps
off Shoreham beach on the low spring tide produced
two dozen Brown Shrimps,
crangon, a handful of the South-clawed
Hermit Crab, Diogenes pugilator,
one young venomous Lesser Weever,
two juvenile Grey
Swimming Crabs, Liocarcinus
vernalis, with 30+ young Flounders
and two young Sole.
The crab in the photograph with the "fleur-de lis" is Portumnus latipes.
of the crab (left) by Guido Rappé
Marine Life Study Society
and Katherine Hamblett discovered a large
squinado, on the sand and rock beach opposite Brooklands at the
edge of the sea in a dip on a low spring tide.
It was missing two of its legs.
usual fare of Shore Crabs, Carcinus
maenas, and Snakelocks
Anemone, Anemonia viridis, were
present, at least two Butterfish, Pholis
gunnellus, between the tides
and exceptionally, the rarer Pimplet Anemone,
balli, is at its most eastern point of distribution up the English
Channel at Worthing. At least two small grey specimens of the Daisy
pedunculatus, were also discovered and there were probably many
more. This species is not normally recorded on the shore at Worthing.
Anemones of Sussex
beach a shrimp fisherman (push-netting) reported
a juvenile Thornback Ray, Raja
clavata, in his four foot net. There were scarcely
a dozen edible-sized Brown
Sharks and Rays
bloom of plankton, probably Phaeocystis
pouchetti, has turned the River Adur
almost orange and considerably reduced visibility in the enriched sea.
The colonies of this flagellate organism Phaeocystis can
be seen in the water at over 1 mm long and plankton will be continuous
for miles of sea water. The sea is then by various local terms like Slobweed
or Baccy Water because of its appearance. When the plankton dies it can
create hypoxic conditions and generally the inshore fauna is diminished
in quantity and variety.
recently seen two examples of a creature washed up on Shoreham Beach that
I never seen before, and can't find in my book of seaside flora and fauna.
I presume it's a type of jellyfish. Can you
identify it please?
like the head of an old-fashioned string floor mop. The diameter of the
'mop' head is about 25 cm. The densely packed 'strings' are the thickness
of an earthworm and about 10 cm long each from the centre of the 'mop'.
The colour is a very pretty pale coral pink and white. Have
you any ideas? It is rare?
most recent one I saw was on the Ferry Road beach (just west of the beach
directly opposite Ferry Road) on the sand at low tide.
to "Seashore" Wildlife Reports 2003
SHOREHAM FISH FESTIVAL on Coronation
West Sussex, was attended by 4,000 people if the sunshine as the high six
metre spring tide filled the river just before 1:00
pm. The British Marine
Life Study Society held an aquarium display
and despite technical problems with a very high plankton content in the
water (which meant the large wrasse could not
be displayed) the exhibits were well received by the younger age group.
was the hottest day of the new millennium when the temperature reached
30.6° C at 5:54 pm
with a gentle breeze. Humidity fell to 39% so it was quite pleasant outside.
surprising with the warm weather, many people who are not at work and children
on holiday made their way to the beach where the
estimated sea temperature was 19° C, possibly rising to 21° C inshore
over sand. Weever
Fish are around and there were several
reports of people being stung by this fish that lives in the sand with
its venomous black dorsal fin sticking above the surface on which the bather
may have the misfortune to step on.
being sting by large Weevers
the pain is described as excruciating for the first two hours after which
it subsides and rarely causes permanent injury. The
pain can be relieved by immersing the foot in hot water at 40° C.
This fish is common on sandy coasts all around Britain.
of the Weever Fish
Gulls, adults and immature birds were
paddling at the water's edge at low tide whilst the Great
Black-backed Gulls remained stationery.
There seems more of these large Great Black-backed
Gulls staying around for the summer this year.
fish were discovered in the shrimp net (push-net) haul in the sea off Widewater
beach. Weever fish are silvery with a black venomous fin and spines. The
can impart a nasty sting on the unwary and bare foot paddler over the sandy
of the Weever page
famous Boar Fish,
aper, died after its aquarium sprung
a leak in the middle of the night. (It was caught in November
bathed in a heat wave up to
C for the opening of the Adur Festival and
World Oceans Day 2003 on Coronation
Green, Shoreham-by-Sea. About
3000 people attended the event that was steady and busy throughout.
included live fish and lobster in aquaria, colouring and badge-making,
and dolphins, birds, shrimps, fish-tasting, touch-table, Shoreham shingle
beach flora and undersea colour photographs and videos.
thanks to all the participants, especially Len Nevell (British Marine Life
Study Society) and Steve Trewhella (Marine Conservation Society). The inflated
dolphin was provided by Steve Savage (Sea Watch Foundation).
groups had special exhibitions including the:
Marine Life Study Society including Shorewatch
Sussex County Council Countryside Unit
Watch Foundation (for Whales & Dolphins)
Sea Fisheries District Committee
(Undersea Biological Recording)
& District Ornithological Society
Oceans Day 2003
am - 4:00 pm
Information File on Adur World Oceans Day
Information File on Adur World Oceans Day
a few rocks for aquarium props in fading light, a moonless evening under
torchlight, there were dozens of Squat
Lobsters, Galathea squamifera, and
at least one red-eyed Velvet
puber. I thought that I picked up
two, but the following day, I noticed that the crab had pale blue eyes
and this I now think may be a different crab altogether, Liocarcinus
arcuatus, the Arch-fronted
Swimming Crab which I have never discovered
before, nor have I heard reported before from the shore. The
identity of this crab has been confirmed by Dr.
small specimen of this crab (carapace width 25 mm) had a heavy carpus on
both chelae, a rough carapace in chocolate brown, swimming legs
that were pointed, slower moving than Necora, with also are pronounced
creamy white underside, and at dusk that was only its fractionally different
movement that made it stand out from the Shore Crab.
There were no "teeth" between the eyes, and the carapace was in a straight
line between the eyes, with red antennae and antennules.
capture on rod and line by Peter
Weight (Lancing) of a Boar
Fish, Capros aper,
from Hove beach is the very first record of this fish caught from the shore
off Sussex. The books
say that this fish lives in depths of over 100 metres and there are no
seas of this depth on the English
side of the English Channel.
pretty little red and silver
rhomboidal fish about 55 mm long, excluding its caudal fin, large eye and
large protractile mouth, with a spiky first dorsal and vibrating second
dorsal and second anal fins (vibrating like the dorsal fin of a pipefish).
Although this fish is rarely caught, it is abundant in deepish water (on
the edge of the continental shelf in the western approaches of the English
Channel) and it is just that normal fishing methods do not capture this
small fish. All records and especially all live records from the
shore or on dives, and all Sussex records are newsworthy.
fish is thriving in the BMLSS private aquarium
(Shoreham-by-Sea). This fish is rarely on display
in British Public Aquaria and the only known display
of this fish was for several years at Mevagissey
Sussex Record of a Boar Fish
Report from the Channel Islands
presence of Spiny
Spider Crabs, Maja squinado,
underneath the wooden groynes on Shoreham beach (TQ
216 047), south of Weald Dyke (road), is a
notable aspect of the wildlife fauna of Shoreham and little known. Although
it is the smaller crabs that are found at low
tide, these are still the biggest animals found between the tides.
a female Spiny Spider Crab moulted
twice before 30 June 2002.
Marine Life Study Society
Thumb (Marine Aquariology)
Nature Notes (Spring 2002) for Shoreham Beach Nature Reports
huge one metre in diameter jellyfish with a humped appearance was discovered
washed up on
Shoreham beach due of south of Coronation Green. This is the species known
by several common names: Barrel Jellyfish,
Football Jellyfish, Root-mouthed Jellyfish, and with the scientific name
of Rhizostoma octopus. This
is an unusual sighting off the Sussex coast, but this year tens of thousands
have been seen off the coast of Cornwall, with many more washed up on the
coast of Devon and Dorset.
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 2002
in Shoreham-by-Sea, on Coronation
Green (TQ 216050), adjacent
to the footbridge over the River
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
Nucella lapillus, have colonised
the newish boulder sea defences on Southwick Beach. One dirty white specimen
was either attacking a Limpet or the Acorn
Barnacles that completed covered the limpet shell.
long spring tide went out below Chart Datum
on Kingston beach and there was a meal of large
prawns Paleamon serratus.
The presence of a dozen very small Common Starfish,
rubens, was unusual for this particular shore. There was an interesting
mixture of typical fish and invertebrate intertidal life, with hundreds
of very small (30 - 55 mm) first year Bullheads.
received a report via the RSPCA of three young sharks washed up on the
beach at either Lancing or Worthing. A size was not mentioned. I assume
these are Lesser-spotted Dogfish, Scyliorhinus
canicula, which are so commonly washed ashore dead in all months of
the year that they scarcely warrant a special mention. The specimen above
was discovered intact near the Old Fort a couple of months ago, before
it had been spotted by the gulls that scavenge along the strandline.
Empty egg cases of the Thornback
Ray (left) and Dogfish (right) are found washed up on the strandline by
Horton and Ray
Purse (BMLSS Information)
most unusual appearance on Kingston
Beach was a solitary Snakelocks
Anemone, which reach their most easterly point of distribution
up the English Channel (northern coast) at Worthing,
with an occasional stragglers on the shore at Shoreham, and
entirely absent (one record only in 100+ visits) from Brighton.
Wildlife Forum of the NE Atlantic commences.
Jellyfish, Aurelia aurita, swarming in thousands in Shoreham
Harbour, Sussex. This jellyfish is common and widespread throughout
the oceans of the world and is common all around the coast of Britain.
It would not deserve a special comment if they had been recorded regularly
at this location before - they had been for about 4 years, but not in so
many numbers. The largest specimens reached 25 cm in diameter. In some
specimens the four rounded pinkish masses, which are the gonads could be
seen. An occasional specimen had 6 rings.
on the Shore
drift occurs as a result of wave action. Propelled by the dominant south-west
winds1 the wave (the swash) hits the shingle beach and moves
the pebbles obliquely up the shore and the backwash returns the pebble
at right-angles, the following waves repeating the process so that the
pebbles gradually move along the shore. The larger pebbles are to be found
higher up the beach as the swash is more powerful than the backwash. On
Shoreham Beach the Environmental Agency interfere with the natural process
by moving large amounts of shingle back to where they were washed away
from, to protect the housing developments on the foreshore.
prevailing winds over Britain are from the south-west. These propel the
waves on to the shore on both sides of the English Channel. However, on
other coasts the prevailing winds blow out to the sea and the dominant
waves that crash on to the shore come from other directions, e.g. from
the north-east on the North Sea coasts, causing longshore drift from north