Coastwatch Survey 15th Sept – 15th Oct 2016

Poster 2016
The Coastwatch autumn survey takes place every autumn across Europe.  It is a basic eco audit of the shore and covers a wide range of information including key animals plants, water of streams pipes entering and litter.
In Ireland the survey dates are 15th Sept to 15th Oct. This year a new micro litter app was added to raise awareness  and collect location type time information for the tiny polystyrene beads, litter fragments and filaments which most people don’t notice but which wildlife ingests and  ultimately we too.
The survey information including the booking map will be uploaded on August 30th . Then people can book survey sites on line or contact us to get hard copy of materials.
Cork Environmental Forum and Cork Nature Network jointly support Coastwatch in carrying out the Autumn Survey in County Cork. Please get in touch if you want to find out more.
Bernadette Connolly , 083 1468064
Karen Loxton, 089 7006882
Acknowledgements Surveyors, regional coordinators and Coastwatch core team contribute time and expertise gratis. Thank you to the Department of Environment, Community and Local Government Water Section for their survey support. Coastwatch Europe is hosted in Civil & Env. Eng. TCD, Dublin 2
More information mail  Phone Karin Dubsky  +353(0)1 896 2599 mob (0)86 8111 684
Cobh hosts Autumn Coastwatch Training
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The final Coastwatch test of new survey materials and training for new surveyors took place in Cobh Cork on  Sunday 28th August.  The event supported by Cork Environmental Forum and Cobh Tidy Towns including a great mix of people not just from the organising groups but also from Kinsale outdoor pursuit centre, interested walkers, swimmers, youth group leader and ecologists.
The test site chosen by the regional coordinator Bernie Connolly was Cushkinny.   Coastwatchers found it was crawling with life, but also had a few issues.
The highlight was a visit of a kingfisher and for locals the identification and finding of species which they didn’t even know were there. That included the well camouflaged sand mason worms and a mass of dog whelk eggs. On the rocky end there was long healthy egg wrack.
The issues found included invasive alien species –the New Zealand flax hanging down from an eroding garden and a young  Pacific (Gigas) oyster which  had  settled on a boulder and was quickly killed.  There was also a litter trap which beamed with plastic bottles and polystyrene  and a  lush green seaweed carpet and too much washed up sea lettuce indicating high nutrient inputs.
Minister Simon Coveney joined the group on the shore and expressed his support for the citizen science survey.   He took a bag and survey form and Coastwatchers hope that he may even find time to cover a survey unit with his family between Sept 15th and Oct 15th  or at least use the new micro litter app  which  is now launched. The Minister noted that in Brussels he had discussed marine litter information and action to reduce it with Commissioner Vella who had expressed a particular interest in  achieving results in this area.   A new country which has just signed up to the on line version of the Coastwatch survey is Malta where the Commissioner comes from.
In discussion with surveyors the Minister noted that the foreshore act was in his portfolio and he was working on updating it. Going more local the Cobh sewage treatment plant would be ready next year. Locals welcomed it and Coastwatch coordinators predicted that the green seaweed carpet should shrink as the sewage fertiliser load would decrease significantly once the sewage is treated.
After the fieldwork session the group   moved to the Commodore Hotel Cobh and went through survey steps  by Angel Duarte the international Coastwatch technical coordinator and presented some ways the survey data is being used
In case you missed out on the training and are interested in joining in this year’s Survey Cork Nature Network in conjunction with Cork Environmental Forum have scheduled two coastal walks along the rocky shore these will be on the Saturday 17th September in Roches Point at 11am and Sunday 18th September at Inchydonney at 11.30am. Full details of these events will be circulated nearer these dates and it is another opportunity to get involved.

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