Marine Life News Bulletin

March 2014

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 the main news page for 2014
GATEWAY:  Further European Links
New EMail address
Link to the British Marine Life Study Society Facebook page
Courses (Marine Life)
Link to the Fishbase web pages
Marine Information Service
(Marine Life Information Network)
World Register of Marine Species
National Biodiversity Gateway
National Biodiversity Network
World Oceans Day
Link to Sealord Photography
Link to the Aphotomarine pages (by David Fenwick)

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

Marine Wildlife Reserve
Link to Jim Anderson's Scottish Nudibranch (and other sea slugs) web pages

7-14 years
Oakley Intertidal 
on facebook
Fish & Sharks of the 
NE Atlantic
New Photographic Gallery 
on flickr
Link to the Sealife Survey on facebook (Marine Biological Assoc. of the Uk.)
Link to Coastal Topography on flickr
Conchological Society of Great Britain and Ireland
How to obtain the book and review



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 Internet Explorer using medium fonts at a resolution of 1024 x 768.
Subscribe and unsubscribe options are at the foot of this page.


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

 14 March 2014
A Slipper Lobster, Scyllarus arctus, was caught in a creel off Newlyn, Cornwall, and photographed and released. 

Scyllarus arctus is a warm water crustacean found in the Mediterranean, and in the Eastern Atlantic from Morocco to the English Channel but is rare north of the Bay of Biscay. They live on stony ground, in caves, and can also be found on muddy bottoms or in seagrass beds. They use the large spade-like scales at the front of the head to burrow into mud, sand or gravel between and under stones. 

Small European Locust Lobster (book name)
Photograph by Will Treneer on Fishing News facebook

Previous Report 2003

9 March 2014
Two Sperm Whales, Physeter macrocephalus, were washed up dead in at Scolla Wick, Muness, a small voe in the south east of Unst in Shetland

Sperm Whale
Photograph by Rebecca Nason
Rebecca Nason Photography
Shetland Exposure Blog

BMLSS Cetacean News Reports
BMLSS Cetacean News Reports 2014

3 March 2014
A very large Cod, Gadus morhua, from the shore of 4.36 kg (9 lb 10 oz) caught from Shoreham Harbour arm, West Sussex, was exceptional in itself, but what was even more surprising is that it had swallowed a plastic bottle. Angler Andy Sinclair discovered the bottle after gutting the fish at home. 

Adur Nature Notes (March 2014)

Dealfish by by Traff Cammish28 February 2014
A rather unusual discovery was a Dealfish (Ribbonfish family), Trachipterus arcticus, washed ashore dead at Filey, Yorkshire. This thin elongated fish was a small specimen with a length estimated at 60 cm (max length 2.5 m).

Dealfish by by Traff Cammish

       Photographs by Traff Cammish

The Dealfish (book name) is a mesopelagic deepwater fish and it appears that it is not all that common even in the sea depths of 300 to 600 metres (or 183 to 914) metres form which it has been reported from the NE Atlantic, not normally including the North Sea (but more than one record held by the BMLSS). We have received occasional reports from off the Scottish islands. It may be a frequently caught fish in the Blue Whiting,  Micromesistus poutassou, fishery at depths of over 500 metres off Ireland. 
Live Fish Image
Bathyl Zones
Previous Report
2006 Reports

Two further Dealfish have been reported washed up since the first discovery. The second one was discovered dead on the shore at Peterhead, north-east Scotland, and the third discovery was a decayed specimen on the beach between Marske and Saltburn in north-east England. There were probably more washed up and left unreported amongst the flotsam and jetsam after the recent storms.

BMLSS Strandline


Marine Wildlife of the North-east Atlantic Ocean Mailing Groups

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

Link to the British Marine Life Study Society Facebook pageBritish Marine Life Study Society
facebook Page:

This Wall is now working properly and members can now post on it. This is designed for quick less important chatty news items. Photographs can be uploaded quickly which is only possible on the Yahoo Group by going to the web page.

Images can be uploaded to flickr.

Wet Thumb (Marine Aquariology) Forum Link
Lots of marine wildlife reports from Shetland on facebook
Photographs include undersea, sea mammals and birds. 
Click on the image to connect


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

Cornish Marine Wildlife (Ray Dennis Records) 2009


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


An online guide to the Stalked jellyfish (Stauromedusae) found 
around the coastal waters of the United Kingdom and Ireland. 
Includes notes on their identification, and where and how to find them.

Stauromedusae UK is an online resource dedicated to marine animals within the order Stauromedusae, species are commonly and collectively known as Stalked Jellyfish. The Stauromedusae is an Order within the phylum Cnidaria, a phylum which contains more well known animals such as jellyfish, sea anemones and corals. Stalked Jellyfish can be found on algae or rocks in shallow coastal waters and intertidally on shores around the United Kingdom and Ireland. Stalked Jellyfish are not that well known or recorded, they can be quite small and are often well camouflaged and have a tendency to seemingly appear and disappear from pools overnight.
St. John's Stalked Jellyfish
Guide to the four species most likely to be discovered on British shores
Stalked Jellyfish are bell-shaped, jelly-like animals, which bear a stalk with a basal sucker, the sucker being used for attachment e.g. to a marine plant, such as Eelgrass, algae (seaweed), rocks or seabed. They generally have eight arms, on which are numerous tentacles, which are used to catch prey, the arms then deliver the food to a central mouth. Some species are capable of some movement and do so in a cartwheeling manner by using their the sucker on the base of their stalk and their tentacles. They also find suitable places of attachment by using local currents to find areas of better water movement for feeding and possibly to find a more shaded place during bright sunny weather. 
More Information

There are ten species of Stalked Jellyfish found in UK waters:

Craterolophus convolvulus - Goblet Stalked Jellyfish
Depastrum cyathiforme
Haliclystus auricula - Kaleidoscope Jellyfish
Haliclystus octoradiatus - Spotted Kaleidoscope Jellyfish
Haliclystus salpinx
Lucernaria bathyphila
Lucernaria quadricornis - Horned Stalked Jellyfish
Lucernariopsis campanulata
Lucernariopsis cruxmelitensis - St. John's Stalked Jellyfish
Stylocoronella variabilis

The ten species here are representatives of four families; Craterolophidae (Craterolophus), Depastridae (Depastrum), Kishinouyeidae (Lucernariopsis) and Lucernariidae (Haliclystus, Lucernaria and Stylocoronella).

Of the species mentioned above the most likely species people are likely to come across is Haliclystus octoradiatus, which has a fairly widespread distribution in the UK. The next most likely species people will come across are Lucernariopsis campanulata and Craterolophus convolvulus.


Collaborative project managed by David Fenwick, Snr.

Because of the rarity and ecological importance of Stalked Jellyfish, biological recorders are encouraged to take ID photographs in the field.

News & Records

Stalked Jellyfish species are UK a BAP Priority Species (Species of principal importance for the purpose of conservation of biodiversity under the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006).

UK BAP Priority Marine Species
Haliclystus auricula
Lucernariopsis campanulata
Lucernariopsis cruxmelitensis

Click on the images for the original photographs or links to more images


Shorewatch Biological Recording


Shore Topography Series

The name of the particular coast should be included and any other interesting information including 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 350K in size.

Aurora Borealis (the Northern Lights) 
Manannán mac Lir, the Celtic God of the sea
Gortmore Viewing Point, Limavady, County Londonderry
Photograph by Neil Moroney
MNM Photography 2014

Click on the images for the original photographs or links to more images

British Coastal Topography

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.

Link to the Porcupine Society web pages
For details of the Porcupine Marine Nature History Society meetings click on the link on the left


 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

Would you know what to do if you found a whale stranded on a beach?

Each year anywhere between five and 50 whales, dolphins and porpoises are washed up on Britain's beaches.
British Divers Marine Life Rescue, a volunteer charity, was set up in 1998 to rescue them.

BBC News Report

01825  765546







Series: Collins Complete Guide
Collins Complete Guide to British Coastal Wildlife
Paul Sterry and Andrew Cleave
384 pages, approximately 1600 colour photos
Harper Collins

List price is £17.99   Offers available

This comprehensive guide contains all the information for the the beginner seashore enthusiast and plenty for the experienced rockpooler, snorkeller and seashore visitor to make it an essential and first or second choice purchase.

A full review will appear in the November issue of Torpedo

Popular Guide Books (Link)

Links to the online fish key


Publisher: marine scotland

Scotland's Marine Atlas

Scotland's Marine Atlas is an assessment of the condition of Scotland's seas, based on scientific evidence from data and analysis and supported by expert judgement.

Click on the image for the free publication

Published: 27 March 2013 
ISBN (EPUB): 9781782564485 
ISBN (MOBI): 9781782564478 

EBook Reader Software (Adobe Digital Editions)
Change the font size to small for square monitors.


The fish is a Corkwing Wrasse
A Field Guide to Marine Fishes of Wales and Adjacent Waters

by Paul Kay & Frances Dipper
£19.95 incl. p&p
Soft cover

With 256 pages and numerous photographs supported by drawings, this book is the most comprehensive photographic guide to marine fish currently available in the UK. Published for the Marine Conservation Society with support from the Countryside Council for Wales.

Click on the image to order this book through the Marine Conservation Society


July 2010

PS: A second revised edition of the book has been published. 


Publisher: Graffeg
Publisher's Review (click on this text)
Review by the City and County of Swansea

This is the book I should have written (and I dare say a few others as well) and is a much needed introduction to the world of the seashore and the hobby of rockpooling. It is a photographic guide to most of the common species encountered which is much appreciated as newcomers and even experienced rockpoolers will try and match up what they have seen to a visual image (and photographs work better than line drawings) and this will usually get them the correct species, (unless there are two very alike species and then you will need a specialist identification guide like the Collins Guide to the Seashore).

However, the seashore is a rich and interesting habitat with a myriad of species and 225 pages of this large pocket guide are comprehensively covered to suit the enthusiast.

Extract from the foreword by Keith Hiscock:
"Being able to names to what you see and, better still, to use your observations to add to our knowledge about the natural world is what this book is about."

But the book for a popular audience is more than this. It starts from the assumption that the parents and teachers and older children are unfamiliar with the seashore environment.


by Andy Horton (August 2010)

Oakley Intertidal on Facebook

BMLSS Guide Books

June 2009

My larger shrimp net, the same design that appeared on River Walks

The Edible Seashore (River Cottage Handbook No. 5)
by John Wright was published

Not just a cookery book: you have to go down to the shore and catch or collect the food yourself. The 240 page hardback book (with an index) is exceptionally well produced in quality of the binding, paper as well as the quality of writing, information and clear useful colour photographs. It is well organised into nine chapters:

Conclusion: Highly recommended, essential purchase ***** (highest five star rating).

BMLSS Shrimping

Marine Fisheries Science Yearbook  2010

Publisher:  defra

Click on this text

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 the European Atlantic
The Bay of Biscay, English Channel, Celtic Sea and coastal SW Ireland
by Dylan Walker and Graeme Cresswell
with the illustrations by Robert Still
WILDGuides  2008
£ 12.00 (includes standard UK P&P)
ISBN:  978-1-903657-31-7

This is the second fully revised and updated edition of this comprehensive guide to the identification of whales, dolphins and porpoises (collectively known as cetaceans) in the European Atlantic. Until very recently, most researchers and whale-watchers were unaware of the great variety of cetaceans that can be seen so close to the shores of western Europe. Indeed, it is only during the last decade, when detailed cetacean surveys have been carried out in earnest, that we have discovered how important this area is for cetacean biodiversity.

This field guide describes all of the 31 species of whale, dolphin and porpoise that have occurred in the European Atlantic.

BMLSS Cetacean Book Reviews

(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 2012
Plans have not yet been finalised for the publications and subscriptions for year 2011. Back copies of previous issues are still available. 

Bulletin Details

For technical reasons, TORPEDO is no longer being sent out by EMail. It is simply easier to view the bulletins on the web pages.

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 at a resolution of 1024 x 768. 
Viewing should be possible on Mozilla 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 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 other web page editors.

Torpedo compiled by Andy Horton
Background design by Andy Horton and other contributors
     25 March 2014 
Copyright  2014   ©    British Marine Life Study Society 
Compiled on Netscape Composer 4.6 and other programs