REPORTS AND NEWS
This species of dolphin is not often recorded in the eastern English Channel.
pod of seven White-beaked
Dolphins, Lagenorhyncus albirostris,
off Dungeness, Kent. They gave a spectacular display including leaping
clear of the water as they fed and were in view for most of the afternoon.
I have looked at the sea on an almost daily basis at Dungeness since 1989
and this is the first time I have seen White-beaked
fisherman Andy Le Prevost
trawling on the Lady Patricia caught a Almaco Jack,
rivoliana, (originally identified as a Guinean
Seriola carpenteri), on
the south-west Casquet bank, near the Channel Islands, at night.
fish was caught at a water depth of 25 metres. The fish was small (length:
30.7 cm, weight: 637 grams) and similar in size to the specimen caught
by George Staples
east of Herm Island on 7 September 2000.
The sea temperature was 11.7°C. My records indicate that this is the
fourth confirmed Amberjack
species caught in Channel Island waters.
40 cm long Oriental Flying Gurnard, Dactyloptena
orientalis, was hauled up in a herring net less than a mile from Penzance.
The fish is being kept at the Blue Reef Aquarium
in Newquay after
skipper Tony Richards,
from St. Ives, kept it alive.
by Jim Greenfield (taken in Gozo)
were in only about 15 metres depth and were hauling up our herring nets
by hand. It was the last fish in the net. I could feel by touching that
it was an extraordinary specimen — its skin is armoured. It had a flat
head and when I picked it up it spread its wings. They are as wide as the
fish is long, about 40 cm.
species of gurnard has only been recorded on one or two occasions off British
coasts, both if them off the coast of Cornwall.
is a beautiful animal. Its wings are all different colours: blue, red,
yellow and grey. I’ve never seen anything like it in all my years at sea.
It’s an incredible beast.”
commercial fisherman Steve Fallaize
landed a handsome Couch's Sea Bream,
Pagrus pagrus, on weighing 2688 grams whole (5.93 lb). The fish
was netted in a water depth of about 20 to 25 metres over a mixed shell-gravel
bottom off Guernsey's west coast.This is the largest Couch's
Sea Bream that I have recorded in Guernsey.
Couch's Sea Bream have been frequently landed
in recent years around the Channel Islands, but this is a southern fish
and it is uncommon any further north.
record of the miniature nudibranch Doto
maculata from Loch Fyne (a sea
loch on west coast of Scotland) at depth of 16 metres could be because
this small mollusc is rarely recorded rather than being uncommon. The problem
is that it could be confused with other sea slugs of the same genus, especially
the common species Doto
commercial fisherman gill netted a 15 cm long Tadpole
raninus, off the Pea Stacks on Guernsey's south coast. This is
a solitary rather than an unusual fish from around the Channel Islands
and all my Guernsey records for this species occur between November and
Whale washed in by the gales and stranded
Aires Point, near Sennen Cove, Cornwall
by Jane Herbert
15 metres long Fin Whale, Balaenoptera
physalis, was discovered washed dead on the rocky shore at Aires Point
near Sennen Cove (near Land's End) on the Cornish coast. The female whale
showed a definite series of injuries. Although intact it was beginning
to whiff a bit.
Marine Wildlife News
Whale Stranding Picture Portfolio
battering the south and west of England have washed along a container of
Barnacles, Lepas, as far as Hayling Island
(Hampshire) which east of the Isle of Wight.
was caught on rod and line four miles out of Brighton, Sussex, and it promptly
regurgitated a Seahorse,
sp. Seahorses are not known off the Sussex coasts, although I have received
at least one unconfirmed sighting before. This is probably the Short-snouted
hippocampus. (It is usually the shallow water species Hippocampus
guttulatus that has been recorded off
the Dorset coast.)
species of seahorses recorded from British seas
have been recommended by English Nature for full protection under under
the Wildlife and Countryside Act (1981). This will be subject to public
15 metres long Fin
Whale, Balaenoptera physalis, was
discovered washed up dead on the shore of St Mary Bay, near Brixham (near
Torquay), in south Devon. The shape of the huge sea mammal was still intact
enabling it to be recognised easily.
is battered by gales
and torrential rain causing floods, whereas many parts of England escaped
this awful weather. The Newquay
Weather Station registered Force 7 gusting to Force 9.
visit to three shores in northern Cornwall brought the first report of
a Violet Snail,
janthina, with the recent spate of
velella, strandings. Two shells, one
alive and one dead, discovered by Julie Hatcher
(Kimmeridge Bay Marine Nature Reserve) on
Widemouth Bay beach, near Bude. The strandline
was covered in the white skeleton shells of Velella
several centimetres thick.
only the shell but the soft body of the Violet
Snail is also a violet colour. This gastropod
feeds of on Velella and
secretes a mucus bubble-raft to keep in buoyant. Another animal (a crustacean)
that secretes a polystyrene-like raft to keep it afloat is the Buoy
fascicularis, which were present in their
hundreds and were still be swept in on to the beach to strand and die.
These were more numerous than at least two species of
Barnacles, the commonest was Lepas
anatifera and the other smaller one washed up was the Duck
Lepas pectinata. These
two barnacles are always attached to floating debris and are not pelagic,
but sessile animals when adult and they become stranded on the shore when
the object they attach themselves to becomes dislodged and floats away.
by Steve Trewhella
347mm TL (315mm FL) Guinean Amberjack,
carpenteri, was caught by Lee Allen and
Gary Cann from a boat close to La Corbiere
Lighthouse (SW Coast of Jersey) in a gill net, set in depth of 15 metres
over sand and a shallow reef. Fin & Feather
of St Helier Fishmarket brought this unusual
capture to my notice. This sub- tropical fish has only been recorded twice
before in the Channel Islands and has not been recorded on the northern
side of the English Channel. The very first capture was in September
2000, with theidentification
confirmed by Alwyn Wheeler at the Natural
History Museum (London). This new record is
not yet confirmed.
Care must be taken to avoid confusion with the Amberjack,
dumerili, which the original fish was originally
identified as, and this is also a rare vagrant fish form southern seas.
or Yellow Crab,
(= E. spinifrons), was discovered off the Cornish coast and
it has found a home in the National
Aquarium at Plymouth. This appears to be the first record in British
waters of this little known (in England) crab that inhabits southern seas
from Brittany (France) to Mauritania (north Africa), and with a widespread
distribution in the Mediterranean, so it is surprising that vagrant crabs
have not appeared before.
- October 2004
capriscus, 10 cm long, have been caught from Weymouth Pier. This may
prove, or at least give a very strong indication, that they are breeding
20 metres long, 30 tonne, Fin
Balaenoptera physalis, was
washed up dead on the mud flats at St Brides,
West Usk, in south Wales, near Newport on the shores of the Bristol Channel.
massive stranding of By-the-wind Sailors,
velella, has now been established
that it has stretched much further than just the Cornish coast and that
the numbers were in billions. Reports of large numbers of large specimens
and huge numbers occurred all along the Welsh coast as far north as Anglesey
and almost certainly further north as well.
on Constantine Bay beach, north Cornwall
were washed up at Woolacombe, north Devon in unprecedented numbers, estimated
up to 200 a square metre!
by David Jenkins via
Biodiversity Records Centre (DBRC)
Ho!, north Devon Velella
are two or three inches (50 - 75 mm) thick on the shore.
hundred By-the-wind Sailors arrived
on the beach on the Isle of Islay, west Scotland. The flesh rotted away
found on the shore between Newquay in Wales and Aberaeron with a
length of 60 mm +. There was one every three metres or so around the rocks
at Cei Bach thinning out in the sand areas. All were strikingly large compared
to those I have found before in south Wales and Cornwall before. All had
soft tissue and colour but were dead and disintegrating.
found large amounts of Velella velella
out off the Pembrokeshire coast back at the start of September and the
ensuing storms seem to have deposited many of them on our beaches in the
west of Pembrokeshire (at least). Their small size make them easy to overlook
at sea and also on dark sand but they are exquisite jewel like creatures.
strandings on Velella
on the sandy beach at Polzeath, Cornwall
by Jonathan Smith
PUBLICATIONS WEB PAGE LINK