Marine Life News Bulletin

...Autumn 2019

     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
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 Network
World Oceans Day
Link to Sealord Photography
Link to the Aphoto pages

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



Quarterly 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..


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

11 December 2019
A large Leatherback Turtle, Dermochelys coriacea, was found dead, but stranded alive, at Mundon Creek just off the River Blackwater in Essex. This was the first record from the Essex coast.

BMLSS Turtles

30 November 2019
A 100 kg of man's debris was discovered in the stomach of a dead subadult male Sperm Whale, Physeter macrocephalus, washed ashore on the beautiful beach at Luskentyre, Isle of Harris, Outer Hebrides, Scotland. 

29 November 2019
A 2.5 metre long Minke Whale, Balaenoptera acutorostrata, was discovered dead by a patrol boat under Battersea Bridge, near the centre of London. 

28 November 2019
On the muddy inlet known as the Mullet in County Mayo, west Ireland, the tide went out so far it stranded a pod of 13 Common Dolphins, Delphinus delphis, including four calves. Fortunately, Gemma O'Connor who was on site to assist and refloat the sea mammals, along with other members of the public, the local NPWS ranger and the Irish Coast Guard members. It was five hours before the tide returned and the nursed and rescued dolphins all swam away.

BMLSS Cetacea

16 November 2019

Bearded Seal
Photograph by John Moncrief Photography  facebook

A Bearded Seal, Erignathus barbatus, made a visit to Bridge End, Burra, in the Shetland Isles. Bearded Seals are a non-migratory Arctic species that feed on molluscs including clams. Visits to the most northerly of the Scottish isles are rare and newsworthy.
BMLSS Bearded Seals

At least three Bluefin Tuna, Thunnus thynnus, at Tiumpan, Isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides, were very active jumping completely clear of the calm sea between 11.05 - 11.15 am, about 800 metes east of the lighthouse.


14 November 2019
A small Slipper Lobster, Scyllarus arctus, was caught off south Devon by the fishing boat FV Hustler. It was returned to the sea.

Scyllarus arctus is a warm waters species 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. 
Previous Report 2001

30 October 2019
A Sperm Whale, Physeter macrocephalus, calf live stranded and died at Hellís Mouth, Lleyn Peninsula, Gwynedd. This was an unusual stranding, possibly only the second calf to be recorded stranded in the UK and also the first Sperm Whale found stranded in Wales since the routine recording of strandings began in 1913.

25 October 2019
The Orange-striped Anemone, Diadumene lineata, was confirmed found growing beneath pontoons at Malpas and Tregothan in Cornwall. It is originally from Asia and is only found in a small number of places around Britain. 
Photograph by Matt Slater

18 October 2019
A 9.7 metre juvenile female Sei Whale, Balaenoptera borealis, was washed ashore dead at Gravesend in the Thames estuary.

October 2019
A large Leatherback Turtle, Dermochelys coriacea, was seen swimming off Brighton, Sussex.

BMLSS Turtles
14 October 2019
Beware of the venomous sting! Portuguese Man-o'-Wars, Physalis physalis, have washed ashore on Cornish and Irish beaches in noteworthy numbers. 

13 October 2019
A 4.5 metre long, 650 kg adult female Sowerby's Beaked Whale, Mesoplodon bidens, was stranded dead on Gullane beach, East Lothian, Scotland, with an encircling piece of rope around her neck.

11 October 2019
A Sperm Whale, Physeter macrocephalus, beached in shallow water off the Northumberland coast has died. The 13 metre long mammal was first sighted off Newbiggin-by-the-Sea and then in the Wansbeck estuary, between Cambois and Sandy Bay. It had been struggling off shore before the tide went out, leaving it stranded. 

The Yellow Crab, Eriphia verrucosa, was photographed at Morbihan, Brittany. This is a southern species not recorded around the British Isles.

8 October 2019
The Humpback Whale, Megaptera novaengliae, which died after swimming into the River Thames estaury was hit by a ship, the Zoological Society of London has said. However, it is not clear whether the wound on the juvenile female was inflicted before or after the whale's death. The dead whale was discovered just after 5 pm in the Greenhithe area.

BMLSS Cetacea


Marine Wildlife of the North-east Atlantic Ocean Mailing Groups

British Marine Life Study Society
facebook Page:

This is designed for quick less important chatty news items. Photographs can be uploaded quickly.

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. 

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 1 Mb in size.

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

British Coastal Topography

British Coastal Topography

Flora and Fauna of Coast and Estuaries


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.

8 June 2017
World Oceans Day
World Oceans Day was first declared as 8th June at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992.
Events occurred all around the world in and around this day.

For technical and resource reasons, Adur World Oceans Day did not take place in 2017 - 2019

World Oceans Day on facebook
Adur World Oceans Day on facebook
United Nations: World Oceans Day.

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






The Essential Guide to Beachcombing and the Strandline

This richly illustrated guide will become a steadfast companion for beach visitors wishing to identify what the sea washes up
By: Steve Trewhella (Author), Julie Hatcher (Author)


304 pages, colour photos, b/w illustrations
Wild Nature Press

Fish Atlas of the Celtic Sea, North Sea, and Baltic Sea
Based on international research vessel data
Author: edited by Henk J.L. Heessen, Niels Daan, Jim R. EllisPrice: € 79,50
An in-depth reference work on marine fish, this is the first complete overview of all marine fish species found in the North Sea, Baltic Sea, and Celtic Sea. Whereas European research mainly focuses on species of commercial interest, this atlas documents current data of all Western European fish species caught in the period 1977 to 2013.

How to obtain the book and review




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
    theTORPEDO 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 2019
Please join the facebook group for free. Formal membership of the Society has ceased.  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.

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 other browsers.

Torpedo compiled by Andy Horton
Background design by Andy Horton and other contributors
Copyright  2019   ©    British Marine Life Study Society 
Compiled on Netscape Composer 4.6 and other programs