Dublin Branch Ocean 2012 – Killiney Beach Walk – In Celebration of World Ocean’s Day 9th June 2012
After 2 heavy rainy days in Dublin, the IWT Dublin Branch were spoilt by not only a mild dry and overcast day, but also by the leader, Tim Clabon, a marine and wetland expert and volunteer.
We explored the kelp beds and associated rock pools which were well exposed due to the very low tide, and learnt about the different seaweeds, including serrated wrack, sea lettuce, sugar kelp and oar kelp (see photo). A range of different crab species were temporarily caught and stored by Tim in a bucket (see photo).
Sadly litter was found including the plastic rings found on drinks cans and the remains of balloons (see photo). Both of these while looking harmless causes fatalities to wildlife either by ingestion as in the case of balloons and whales or plastic rings that can encircle diving birds.
Several South Dublin rivers enter the Irish Sea along Killiney Beach including the Deansgrange River and the Loughlinstown River. Tim came well prepared to demonstrate the abundant fresh water wildlife of the latter and took several samples of the water. In the net he pulled up a range of aquatic invertebrates, including eel and a very young flounder.
On the return we explored the coastal vegetation and some brave souls even sampled the edible plants including sea radish and sea rocket (word of warning – only eat after an expert tells you its safe). After two stormy days it was not surprising to see a few fatalities including a female crab with her nest of eggs (see photo). Other wildlife seen today included, sand martins, cormorants a grey sea and some early attendees had even spotted some dolphins off shore.
Many thanks to Tim for a great celebration of World Ocean’s Day.
|Litter which can kill|
|Female velvet swimming crab with eggs. Note the paddle shaped back claws which help the crab to 'swim' short distances|