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Marine Life & Conservation

Shark-Filled Bundles of Fun for all the Family this Summer

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Need some inspiration on what to do with the kids this summer holiday? Got shark-mad people at home that are eager for activities and challenges? Grab an activity bundle this summer and have fun as you learn about some of the ocean’s most iconic animals – Sharks and Rays!

The Shark Trust has partnered with national award-winning outdoor education provider – The Great Out-tours – to produce an exciting range of educational resources. With sharks and rays as the inspiration. From beach-combing to craft challenges, these bundles of fun will provide hours of guided learning for children and adults alike.

Transport your children / adults in care settings, to the magical kingdom of these deep ocean dwellers! These bundles will ignite a spirit of curiosity, exploration and inspiration, to learn about & protect the sharks of our seas.

We are delighted to be working in close partnership with Shark Trust, to help safeguard the future of sharks & rays, through education. We have produced illuminating shark and ray themed activity bundles, designed to fill your families with wild fun and learning, both outdoors and in! We think you’ll really enjoy yourselves making, doing & foraging, whilst helping the conservation efforts for these amazing creatures?

My personal passion for sharks and rays, drives our focus within the activity bundles, to create positive learning about these fantastic fish, and provide ideas for you to get everyone out, about and connected with the ocean! Within the activities, we highlight the crucial role sharks and rays play in marine ecosystems and think you/your children will be inspired to want to protect them and safeguard their future’s!” John Brooksbank, Founder of The Great Out-tours

Learning about sharks and rays is a great way to get everyone connected with the ocean. You can have fun as you learn, either at home, down the park, or on the beach. The activity bundles give families the opportunity to partake in a shared experience, working together to complete the tasks and activities, learning about amazing sharks along the way.

We know there’s an appetite for more good quality shark-themed activities. Partnering with The Great Out-tours has been a great way for us to provide our supporters and shark fans with fun and exciting new ways to discover and connect with sharks and rays.” Paul Cox, MD, Shark Trust

Packed with things to do both when the sun is shining or if you are stuck indoors on a rainy day, the activity bundles have something to get your teeth into, including crafting, puzzles, educational videos, and outdoor fun at the beach or in the garden.

“Everything was so easy to follow and with resources available to download, it meant that you could quite easily get on with things. Even my 2-year-old got involved with the activities!n

The boys also really enjoyed the online jigsaw puzzles and word searches associated with each activity. Actually, I think Mummy rather enjoyed those too!”  Laura, Parent of four boys of varying primary ages


Shark Bundle Information

SHARKS & RAYS BUNDLE (Priced at £3.50):

The Sharks and Rays bundle contains 4 themes each with a range of activities and resources. Each theme ends with a family quiz and completion of the bundle qualifies you for a reward.

Jaw dropping fun!

  • Using sharks and rays as the inspiration, they’ve crammed this bundle full of fun educational activities, targeted at primary/secondary children and adults in care and domestic home settings.
  • At home, in the garden, on a walk, in the park, or on the beach: From beachcombing to craft challenges, these resources will provide hours of guided learning. As well as mental/physical and social enrichment for children and adults.
  • Tasty treats: 4 main shark and ray ‘headline’ themes are supported with a tasty suite of activities that include age specific wordsearches, puzzles, ‘eye-opening’ educational video clips and a wildly fun family/care home quiz challenge!
  • Fintastic Learning! Each activity has curriculum and life enrichment linkage with risk-assessed educational resources.
  • Rays the roof! Complete your sharks and rays bundle and receive a certificate/reward. The Great Out-tours and Shark Trust would love you to picture share your crafting creations!
  • Bitesize budget? The Sharks and Rays bundle costs £3.50, with a 50p donation from each registration going to the Shark Trust.

Click on the link below to sign up for and buy the Sharks and Rays Bundle:

https://thegreatout-tours.com/product/sharks-and-rays-bundle/

Mini Shark Bundles (Priced at £1)

Great Egg-Case Hunt

Join us on a magical adventure, as we explore the exciting world of egg-laying sharks and skates. You’ll be heading to the beach for a spot of field-work and finding out what you can do to help protect these incredible animals…

Click on the link below to sign up for and buy The Great Eggcase Hunt bundle.

https://thegreatout-tours.com/product/the-great-eggcase-hunt-bundle/

Thresher Sharks

Discover the super agile, fish-herding, thresher sharks. Made up of 3 different species. With a tail like a whip to stun prey, thresher sharks can stir up dinner at lightning speed!

Click on the link below to sign up for and buy the Thresher Shark bundle.

https://thegreatout-tours.com/product/thresher-shark-bundle/


For more information about the work of the Shark Trust: https://www.sharktrust.org/

For more information about The Great Out-tours: https://thegreatout-tours.com/

Marine Life & Conservation

Beach litter going down, but plastic still polluting UK shores

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  • Marine Conservation Society reveals results of 2021 Great British Beach Clean
  • On average, litter found on UK beaches dropping year on year
  • 75% of beach litter made of plastic or polystyrene
  • An average of just 3 single-use plastic bags found on UK beaches

The Marine Conservation Society’s annual Great British Beach Clean, which took place from 17th – 26th September this year, saw 6,176 volunteers head outside to clear litter from their local streets, parks and over 55,000 metres of UK beaches.

A total of 5064.8kg of litter was collected and recorded over the week by dedicated volunteers and the results are in.

In positive news, the average litter recorded per 100 metres is dropping year on year across the UK. This year, an average of 385 items were found, dropping from averages of 425 in 2020, and 558 in 2019.

Cotton bud sticks moved out of the UK’s top ten most common rubbish items this year, with the number of plastic cotton bud sticks collected being the lowest in the Great British Beach Clean’s 28-year history. This year, an average of 6 plastic cotton bud sticks were found, dropping from 15 in 2020. These decreasing figures are a positive indication that policies are working.

Scotland was the first UK country to ban the manufacture and sale of plastic cotton bud sticks in October 2019. England followed suit last year, introducing a ban on single-use plastic straws, cotton bud sticks and stirrers. It’s likely that the drop in numbers found on beaches is, at least in part, as a result of these policies over the last couple of years. The Welsh Government is yet to introduce a ban on plastic cotton bud sticks.

Numbers of single-use plastic bags on beaches have continued to drop, from a high of 13 on average in 2013, down to just 3 in 2021.

Plastic pieces remain the most prevalent form of litter on UK beaches, with 75% of all litter collected being plastic or polystyrene, with an average of 112 pieces found for every 100 metres of UK beach surveyed.

Top five most common litter items on UK beaches (average per 100m)

  1. Plastic and polystyrene pieces (111.7)
  2. Cigarette stubs (27.8)
  3. Crisp and sweet packets, lolly sticks etc (25.9)
  4. Plastic caps and lids (15.5)
  5. String/cord (15.3)

With so much beach litter being made from plastic, the Marine Conservation Society is continuing to campaign for ambitious single-use plastics policies which would phase out the manufacture and sale of plastic products in the UK.

Dr Laura Foster, Head of Clean Seas at the Marine Conservation Society: “UK governments’ current piecemeal approach to single-use plastics policy just won’t cut it anymore. While we’re seeing a downward trend in litter on beaches, we’re still seeing huge volumes of plastic washing up on our shores.

“A shocking 75% of all the litter we collected from UK beaches this year was made of plastic or polystyrene, so it’s clear what we need to focus our attention on. Comprehensive and ambitious single-use plastics policies which reduce the manufacture and sale of items is the quickest way of phasing out plastic from our environment.”

Lizzie Prior, Beachwatch Manager at the Marine Conservation Society: The ongoing downward trend we’re seeing in litter levels on UK beaches is a positive sign that the actions we’re taking at a personal, local and national level are working. But we can’t sit back and relax, now is the time for even more ambitious action.”

The Marine Conservation Society included PPE items on its survey form for the first time this year*, providing a baseline from which to understand the impact and presence of face masks and gloves in the future. Levels of PPE found this year were similar to 2020, when masks were made mandatory across the UK. 32% of UK beaches cleaned found PPE litter though masks ranked  59 out of 121 for most common litter items.  Inland, for the charity’s Source to Sea Litter Quest, 80% of litter picks found PPE in 2021, in comparison to 69% found in 2020.

Read more about the Great British Beach Clean, and the Marine Conservation Society’s year-round Beachwatch programme on the charity’s website: www.mcsuk.org.

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Marine Life & Conservation

Endangered Mako Sharks win vital protection

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The Shark Trust are celebrating this week. After many years of hard work with their Shark League Colleagues, the team has been successful in securing protection for the North Atlantic Short Fin Mako Sharks. This hard-fought ban on the catching of North Atlantic shortfin mako sharks was adopted this week by the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT). It is a giant step toward in reversing the decline of this seriously over-fished population.

“At long last, we have the basis for a game-changing rebuilding plan, but it won’t be successful if we take our eyes off the EU and their egregious intent to resume fishing a decade before rebuilding is predicted to begin,” said Ali Hood, Director of Conservation for the Shark Trust. “In this moment, however, we focus on the overwhelming chorus of concern that helped us reach this critical breakthrough. We’re deeply grateful for the ‘voices for makos’ – the continuous calls from conservationists, divers, scientists, aquarists, retailers, and elected representatives to protect this beleaguered shark.”

While the ban in initially in place for two years, this move shifts the emphasis of the debate and parties will now have to justify the reopening of the fishery of an Endangered shark.  The Shark Trust will be keeping a close eye on future discussions.

Makos are exceptionally vulnerable to over-fishing. These oceanic species are classified by the IUCN as globally Endangered and so this new ban on fishing them will help populations recover. Whilst the Shark Trust are delighted at this positive result, they will not be standing still and will both continue to safeguard Makos and fight for all the other endangered shark species.

The dive community, assisted by Shark League partner PADI AWARE Foundation, played their part in achieving this win, putting their many voices behind the Voice for Makos campaign. Together the Shark Trust and the dive community will raise awareness and share their love of sharks in the ongoing fight to protect them.

For further information on the work of the Shark Trust: www.sharktrust.org

For further information on the Shark League: www.sharkleague.org


Header Image: Jacob Brunetti

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Egypt | Safaga, Brothers & Elphinstone | 27 January – 04 February 2022 | Emperor Elite

Jump on board this famous Red Sea liveaboard and enjoy diving the famous wrecks of the Red Sea with this fantastic special offer.  Emperor Elite offers a contemporary living space combined with the best itineraries available in the Red Sea.

Price NOW from just £975 per person based on sharing a twin cabin including:

  • Flights from London Gatwick to Hurghada with 23kgs baggage
  • 7 nights in shared cabin
  • 3 meals a day, soft drinks, red wine with dinner
  • 6 days’ diving, guide, 12ltr tank & weights, Marine Park fees and port departure fees
  • Free Nitrox

Booking deadline: Subject to availability.

Call Diverse Travel on 01473 852002 or email info@diversetravel.co.uk.

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