A little update from the Cornwall Marine strandings network whom we help to support via our 1% for the planet membership
“Keen volunteers from all over Cornwall gathered in Truro at the weekend (Saturday 5th December) for their sixth Marine Strandings Forum, organised by the Cornwall Wildlife Trust Marine Strandings Network, and funded by Frugi’s 1% for the Planet scheme. Although the event was a social occasion, it also had a serious purpose.
The volunteers are at the forefront of scientific research into the deaths of marine animals and it’s thanks to their efforts on the front line that we can start to piece together information about what kills dolphins, seals, basking sharks and turtles in Cornish waters.
The Forum presentations covered a range of informative subjects including talks from veterinary investigation officer James Barnett on evidence of bottlenose dolphin interactions with other species, Rebecca Allen from the Cornwall Seal Group explained her work on the entanglement of grey seals, and Stephen Pikesley, an MSc student from University of Exeter Cornwall presented his findings on his analysis of sightings and strandings data held by Cornwall Wildlife Trust. Jan Loveridge, Strandings Co-ordinator for the MSN described the notable findings from the last 12 months strandings in Cornwall, and Rob Deaville from the Institute of Zoology’s Cetacean Strandings Investigation Project gave an update on the national programme and how Cornwall’s data fits in. He thanked the volunteers and the Trust for their hard work and described the Network as a role model for other organisations.
One volunteer said, “Its fantastic being part of such a great team and feeling like you can put something back. Its great coming to this forum each year to find out what use the data we have all collected has been put to and to meet other like-minded people. This year’s event was the best yet!”