Marine Life News Bulletin

November 2008

ISSN 1464-8156

On-line connection to the British Marine Life Study Society web pages
Index for the Torpedo News Bulletins
Link to the forum for marine wildlife of the NE Atlantic Ocean and adjoining seas
Link to Marine Life News 2008
GATEWAY:  Further European Links
New EMail address
Courses (Marine Life)
Discussion Groups
Marine Information Service
(Marine Life Information Network)
National Biodiversity Gateway
National Biodiversity Network
World Oceans Day
Link to Ray Dennis's Cornish Marine Life Reports for 2007
Link to Sealord Photography
Link to an on-line page for younger students of the seashore. Spider Crab and youngsters at Adur World Oceans Day 2002 (Photograph by Duncan Morrison)
7-14 years

Norwegian Marine***

National Marine Aquarium, Plymouth

Scottish Association for Marine Science

Silver Dolphin Centre, Helston, Cornwall

Link to the Porcupine Society web pages

Marine Life Society
South Australia ***

De Strandwerkgemeenschap

Marine Biodiversity and Ecosystem Functioning



Monthly electronic news bulletin for the marine life of the NE Atlantic Oceans including the seas and seashore around the British Isles.
The bulletin is designed for Microsoft Explorer 4 and above using medium fonts at a resolution of 800 x 600 and can be viewed satisfactorily at a resolution of 1024 x 768.
Subscribe and unsubscribe options are at the foot of this page.
If you receive this bulletin as an EMail subscriber, you may find the best way to view the file is on your hard disc in your directory of Incoming EMails.


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

23 November 2008
A Ray's Bream, Brama brama, was discovered on the beach between Marske and Saltburn, North Yorkshire, following heavy seas. The colourful wellies are in the photograph for scale, adult size 6 - not a childs! 
Report & Photograph 
by Paul Anderson

16 November 2008

I was fishing a match on Hopton Beach near Lowestoft, Norfolk, on Sunday and whilst fishing I had a Ray's Bream, Brama brama, chasing something in the breakers it flew off the top of the wave and stranded itself on the beach it went absolutely mad, so I grabbed it by the tail fin but it was too powerful to hold so as it dropped the fish in a small amount of water I kicked it clear of the water. It was the most colourful fish I had ever seen with metallic blues and reds round the top and the body was a bar of silver. When it died all the colours went and it went grey were all the colour. I had already filleted it as I new it was a pelagic fish and thought it would eat well. It was excellent I now want some more. It weighed 3 lb 4 oz.

Report and Photograph by Martin Peters
15 November 2008
This Ray's Bream, Brama brama, was washed up on North Blyth beach in Northumberland. 
Report by Derek Burton (in the photograph)

9 November 2008
The remains of three Ray's Bream, Brama brama, were discovered washed up on the beach at Withernsea, East Yorkshire. Two were intact but the third had been scavenged. The species was identified to me by a fisherman on the beach and confirmed by photographs on this site.

Report by Robin Barnfather (Withernsea)

BMLSS Ray's Bream

5 November 2008
White-beaked Dolphin, Lagenorhyncus albirostris, stranded at Tynemouth, north-east England, was euthanased because of its poor body condition and being unable to maintain its balance.

BMLSS Cetaceans
Whales & Dolphins (by Steve Savage)

1 November 2008
Robert Mellors discovered a Ray's Bream, Brama brama, was found after a storm in the North Sea in amongst a large mound of seaweed washed up on the East Beach at Dunbar, East Lothian, south east Scotland.  It measured approximately 44 cm by 28 cm and it weighed approximately 1.5 - 2 kg.

Report by June Small

Ray's Bream (Photograph by David Taylor)30 October 2008
I found a Ray's Bream, Brama brama, on Cleethorpes beach between Wonderland and Grimsby Docks. As you can see the Gulls have had a good go at it.

 Report and Photograph by David Taylor (Cleethorpes)

29 October 2008
A small 12.6 kg tuna, discovered in Plymouth Fish market in the morning, was caught in gill net off Mevagissey, south Cornwall. It was identified as a small Bluefin Tuna, Thunnus thynnus

Small Bluefin Tuna (Photograph by Doug Herdson)

It was originally though to be the rarer Big-eyed Tuna, Thunnus obesus. 

25 October 2008
A one metre long Albacore, Thunnus alalunga, was found washed ashore at the head of Loch Long in the Firth of Clyde, south-west Scotland. This pelagic, oceanic and migratory fish In the Scombridae family of Tunnies and Mackerel is usually found in large shoals in the mid-Atlantic in temperate and tropical waters in a more southerly latitude of British Isles and in the Mediterranean Sea. This is the first record on the BMLSS News Pages. The identity of this fish has not been confirmed. It may be another Bluefin Tuna, Thunnus thynnus
Image (by Davy Holt)

BMLSS Tunnies


Marine Wildlife of the North-east Atlantic Ocean Mailing Groups

Marine Wildlife of the North-east Atlantic Ocean 
Yahoo Group
New Group:

With the closure of Smart Groups at the end of November 2006 most of the 7500+ messages have been filed at:

Marine Wildlife of the North-east Atlantic Ocean Jiglu

Images can be uploaded to flickr.

Wet Thumb (Marine Aquariology) Forum Link


All reports by Andy Horton unless the credits are given 
to other observers or reporters.

Cornish Marine Wildlife (Ray Dennis Records) 2005


Each month, at least one special marine image will be published from images sent to the BMLSS. This can be of the seashore, undersea world or any aspect of the marine natural world, especially the underwater life, but not restricted to life beneath the waves. Topical inclusions may be included instead of the most meritorious, and images will be limited to the NE Atlantic Ocean and adjoining seas, marine and seashore species and land and seascapes.


Venerids from around the British Isles (by Jan Light).

Top: Venerupis senegalensis (=pullastra)
Middle: Tapes rhomboides
Bottom: Tapes aureus

Note: pink flush in interior umbone of rhomboides - diagnostic
Note: golden flush in aureus (but sometimes present in senegalensis)
Note: dark brownish purple on interior of senegalensis but not present in pale coloured individuals.
Note similarities in outline to the untrained eye.  Also once you get to know the species you recognise colour combinations and patterns not seen in the other two.

Mollusc Page



Shore Topography Series

The name of the particular coast should be included and the grid reference, if known. Print photographs can be included in Exhibitions and on the BMLSS Web Sites and electronic publications. Electronic images in *.jpg format can also be considered for the web site. They should not exceed 250K in size.

Gale at Brighton Marina

Gale at Brighton Marina, Sussex

Brighton Marina was constructed on the intertidal area of Black Rock, east Brighton. It just out into the English Channel on the seaward side of the white chalk cliffs. 
Photograph by Bill Carter

Faces of Sussex
Photographic Gallery by Bill Carter

flickr British Coastal Topography

First enquiry by EMail to

New EMail address


Photographers submitting pictures should indicate if they wish them to be considered for inclusion as confirming permission takes work and time and can delay publication of the news bulletins. 

Link to more marine life photographs

Click on the album for more links (On-line link)




In chronological order, the most recent events are at the top of the page. Events open to the public, free or for a nominal charge only are included. Most Seminars need to be booked in advance.


BIOSIS  Conference Calendar for Zoology

(Major Link of all biological conferences around the world)

 Public Aquaria List
?  What to do if you find a stranded whale or dolphin  ?

If you find a LIVE stranded or injured whale or dolphin on the beach you must send for help QUICKLY. A whale or dolphin stranding is an emergency and the speed of response by a professional rescue team is perhaps the most crucial factor in determining whether or not an animal can be returned to the sea alive.

0300 1234 999
0300 1234 999
0131 339 0111
0845 201 2626
01534 724331
00 44 1481 257261

British Divers Marine Life Rescue
01825  765546





Sharks in British Seas

Richard Peirce
138 pages, colour illustrations, line drawings, colour & b/w photos.
Lots of newspaper reports.

Publisher:  Shark Cornwall
Softcover | 2008 | £9.99

ISBN: 978-0-955869402 

by Lucy Beckett-Bowman

Consultant: Andy Horton
Usborne Publishing   £3.99

Usborne Beginners Series
Level One (very young children)

ISBN 978-0-7460-8864-7

BMLSS Notes for a Primary School Teacher

Whales & Dolphins 
of Great Britain
by Dylan Walker and Alex Wilson
CETACEA Publishing 2007
ISBN-10: 0-9556144-0-6
ISBN-13: 978-0-9556144-0-8

If you would like to see whales and dolphins in British waters, Whales and Dolphins of Great Britain is the book for you! A comprehensive and easy-to-use field guide to all of the regularly seen species, it also shows you how, where, and when to go and see these spectacular marine mammals, with 38 boat operators and 16 outstanding land-based viewpoints listed. The text is packed with information on how to book a trip; including the species that are likely to be seen, how to get there, and what photographic opportunities are available. If you love whales and dolphins and enjoy seeing the British countryside, this book is a must you never know when you might need it! 

Whales and Dolphins of Great Britain is the first in a series of regional whale and dolphin watching guides being published by Cetacea Publishing. 

CETACEA Publishing, Nook Farmhouse, Ashby Road, Shepshed, Loughborough, LE12 9BS. Telephone: 0845 388 3053. Fax: 0845 108 6386. 
E-Mail: Website designed by de Wilson-Wildman LLP 

BMLSS Cetacean Book Reviews

Click on this image for a link for further details
The Gulf Stream
by Bruno Voituriez 
Publisher:  UNESCO 
ISBN:  92-3-103995-4 
222 pages, figures, glossary, bibliography

The Gulf Stream
Amid contemporary scenarios of potential climatic catastrophes and global warming that might be imagined to bring a new ice age, the powerful image of the Gulf Stream rising from the Florida Straits and flowing to the north Atlantic inevitably provokes questions about its ecological significance and whether it might ever stop.

Coastal Plankton
Photo Guide for European Seas

by Otto Larink & Wilfried Westheide
reviewed by Wim van Egmond
(Collins New Naturalist) (Paperback)
by Peter Hayward
Collins 2004

ISBN:  0-00-220031-7

Amazon Web Site

Paperback. Pp 288. Colour & b/w photographs, illustrations, charts, maps and bibliography. Fine copy. "New Naturalist" Seashore is a comprehensive, authoritative account of the natural history of the seashore.

BMLSS General Guides
BMLSS Advanced Guides


Working to reduce Marine Pollution and to help the birds caught in it
Quarterly Newsletter
Registered Charity  803473


Decision-making in Marine Mammal 
Rescue and Rehabilitation

Eastern English Channel Habitat Atlas for Marine Resource Management
is available for download from

Encyclopaedia of Marine Life of Britain and Ireland

Marine Fauna of Norway

WET THUMB (Marine Aquariology)

BMLSS: Marine Life Articles in Publications (Link)

The British Marine Life Study Society are responsible for producing the journal GLAUCUS, which is the first publication exploring the marine life of the seas surrounding the British Isles available to the general public. In future, I expect the publication to be in an electronic format. 
    We also publish the SHOREWATCH Newsletter and
    the TORPEDO Electronic News Bulletin.

    The Glaucus 2002 CD-ROM was sent out to Premier BMLSS members in January 2003.

EMail Address

New EMail addressEMail address for messages to the British Marine Life Study Society 


Membership 2008
Plans have not yet been finalised for the publications and subscriptions for year 2008. Back copies of previous issues are still available. 

Bulletin Details

If you receive this Bulletin direct from the British Marine Life Study Society it will contain only hypertext and image (*.htm *.gif & *.jpg) files.
Recipients can only unsubscribe if the Bulletin is received directly from the BMLSS.
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To save download times, only new images are included with each Bulletin.
The Bulletin is designed to be viewed on Internet Explorer using medium fonts
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Viewing should be possible on Netscape and other browsers.

Printing the two column version of Torpedo (from issue 28)

These pages are not designed for the default settings on the Page Set-ups of your browser. I recommend viewing in Microscope Internet Explorer 6 and altering the right and left hand columns in the Page Set-up menu to 9 mm (from 19 mm).
The page set-up can also be amended in Netscape Composer and other web page editors, and this has the advantage of enabling the specified number of pages to be printed and the information about the file (name, path, date) to be deleted.

Some of the images may not display if you have changed your directory for downloaded files. The images may also not display properly if your settings on your EMail software do not allow you do this automatically. When received in Pegasus the format is changed slightly, but the bulletin is still readable 

Torpedo compiled by Andy Horton
Background design by Andy Horton and other contributors

     28 November 2008

Compiled on Netscape Composer 4.7 and other programs
Boar Fish, Capros aperLen NevellMarc AbrahamJohn KnightUrchin fossil (out of scale) dating the pebbles at 85 million years oldMermaid's PursesPeter Talbot-ElsdenCharlie DimmickAndy HortonSamanthaThe crab was called Rooney because of its missing leg. Nobody asked about the brain cells of a crab?