Discover Cornwall’s inspirational marine life

Thursday 13th July 2017

Bottlenose dolphins, by Annabelle Lowe from Newquay Sea Safaris

Cornwall Wildlife Trust is celebrating Cornwall’s extraordinary marine life with two weeks of fun and inspiring marine events as part of National Marine Week, which runs from Saturday 29th July to Sunday 13th August.

Matt Slater, Marine Officer for Cornwall Wildlife Trust says,

“Many people don’t appreciate how amazing Cornwall’s marine life is. Our waters are highly productive and support far more animals than are found in more tropical seas! From colour changing cuttlefish to humpback whales, our marine life is truly inspiring and Marine Week events in Cornwall will make people aware not only of how lucky we are but of how we can all work to protect this natural resource.

Cornwall Wildlife Trust’s event programme includes something for everyone, with a range of exciting activities including snorkelling, rockpooling, clifftop sea watches, beach cleans and sustainable seafood events.

For those who enjoy watching wildlife from beautiful cliff top locations the Trust are also running daily sea-watches around the coast led by experienced volunteers. Everyone is welcome and who knows what you may see; seabirds, seals, dolphins and whales and even giant basking sharks!”

Matt Slater continues,

“Cornwall’s seas are fantastic, but they are also under increasing pressure. Our events not only inspire but also highlight ways in which people can help protect the marine environment. In Cornwall, we are lucky to have a growing network of marine conservation volunteers running local marine groups all around our coast and there are many ways in which the public can get involved and help protect their local patch of coastline!”

The Trust is encouraging the public to think about what the sea means to them and to consider their relationship with the sea. You could take on The Wildlife Trusts’ ‘The Sea and Me’ challenge which asks everyone to make a pledge for the sea, for example, by saying no to single-use plastics like cups, bags and straws which can end up in the oceans.

Nationally renowned street artist ATM is creating a colossal mural of a cuttlefish in Portsmouth to mark the start of Marine Week.

Joan Edwards, Head of Living Seas at The Wildlife Trusts says,

“Cuttlefish remind us that diversity of marine life is precious; although some of our waters are protected, we need a network of ecologically coherent sites creating a ‘blue belt’ around the entire UK to support nationally important habitats and species.”

National Marine Week events in Cornwall

Monday 31st July – Marine Expedition aboard the Hardiesse Sail Training Ship, Falmouth – 10.00am to 4.00pm. An expedition aboard a traditional gaff ketch sail training ship in the Carrick roads, collecting plankton, using a drop-down camera and mackerel fishing. Booking is essential, spaces very limited. No under 8s. £10 adults, children free. Please contact Matt Slater (01872)302251 matt.slater@cornwallwildlifetrust.org.uk

Tuesday 1st August – Newquay Crab Fest with Cornwall Good Seafood Guide – at Newquay Harbour – 2.00pm to 5.00pm. Discover Newquay’s sustainable seafood secret, meet the fishermen, learn how crabs are caught and how to took them, and take the crab taste test. Free event. There is a charge for boat trips.

Wednesday 2nd August – Snorkel Safari – Porthscatho, Roseland - 10.00am to 12.00 noon. A guided snorkel for confident UK sea swimmers off the beautiful Roseland Peninsula. Bring your own mask, snorkel and a well-fitting wetsuit. Children £5 accompanied by adults on land. No under 8s. Booking is essential, contact Matt Slater at matt.slater@cornwallwildlifetrust.org.uk or (01872) 302251. Sponsored by South West Water.

Thursday 3rd August – Beach Clean Masterpieces – Porthtowan Beach by CWT flag – 10.00am to 12.00 noon. Help our team clean awesome Porthtowan Beach and then use our colourful plastic finds to create pieces of art. Sponsored by South West Water. Booking is required, please contact Abby Crosby at abby.crosby@cornwallwildlifetrust.org.uk or on (01872)302230.

Friday 4th August – Snorkelling in a Rockpool – near Polzeath – 9.00am to 12.00 noon. A children’s learn to snorkel session in the safety and beauty of a Cornish rockpool. Bring your own mask, snorkel and a well-fitting wetsuit. Children £5, accompanied by adults on land. 6-11 years only. Booking is essential contact Fox Club (07872) 273939 foxclub@cornwallwildlifetrust.org.uk 

Monday 7th August – Hurray for Honeycomb – Northcott Mouth, Bude – 12.00 noon to 1.30pm.
Discover the regionally rare and specular honeycomb reefs of North Cornwall. Meet at the NT car park. Sponsored by South West Water and with permission of the National Trust.

Tuesday 8th August – Something Fishy – Port Isaac – 10.00am to 1.00pm. Visit the historic fishing village of Port Isaac to find out about the Trust’s Cornwall Good Seafood Guide. After a visit to the fish market, we will have a go at catching our own gobies with the Trust’s fish traps! Booking is required. Contact Fox Club to book your place and for further directions. Call (01872) 273939 or foxclub@cornwallwildlifetrust.org.uk

Wednesday 9th August – St. Piran’s Crab Search – near Penzance – 11.00am to 1.00pm. Join dedicated crab enthusiast Matt Slater to hunt for this exciting and newly discovered little hermit crab and other critters! Meet in the car park The Parade, Mousehole, next to Rock Pool café. Sponsored by South West Water.

Thursday 10th August – Horrible Beasts up the Creek  – Falmouth Harbour – 1.00pm to 3.00pm. An extreme rockpool ramble finding all things slimy and squidgy in Falmouth Harbour. Cost children £3, with adults free. Booking is essential, contact Matt at matt.slater@cornwallwildlifetrust.org.uk or (01872) 302251. Sponsored by South West Water.

Friday 11th August – Strandline Scramble – Marazion - 1.00pm to 3.00pm. Join Trust marine staff on a guided walk from Marazion to Trenow looking for treasures washed up by the surf. Meet in Folly’s Field car park by the CWT flag. Booking is required, contact Abby Crosby at abby.crosby@cornwallwildlifetrust.org.uk or on (01872)302230. Sponsored by South West Water.

Friday 11th August – Radical Rockpooling – Hannafore Point, Looe – 2.00pm to 4.00pm. Join the Your Shore Beach Rangers team on a rocky shore adventure, climbing over rocks, wading through gullies and experiencing rockpools in a whole new way. Booking is required. Email nat.gibb@cornwallwildlifetrust.org.uk

Seaquest Public Seawatch Events: Running alongside the Marine events are Seaquest Seawatch Events where from 11.00am to 1.00pm you can join trained volunteers on the clifftops to look for marine wildlife, including dolphins, porpoises and whales. For more information on any of these contact Katie Bellman at seaquest@cornwallwildlifetrust.org.uk :

Saturday 29th July – Boscastle NCI Station. Sunday 30th July – Rame Head NCI Station. Monday 31st July – Black Head, St Austell. Tuesday 1st August – The Rumps headland, Polzeath. Wednesday 2nd August – Towan Headland, Newquay.Thursday 3rd August – Godrevy headland. Friday 4th August – Hella Point, nr Porthgwarra. Saturday 5th August – NT Lizard Watch Point. Sunday 6th August – Pendennis Point, Falmouth.