The UK’s leading marine charity has received several reports in the last week of Portuguese man o’ war washing up on beaches. There have been sightings at Newgale in Pembrokeshire, Portmelon and Porthloo on the Isles of Scilly and Gwithian, Pendeen, Porth, Holywell Bay, Polzeath, Hayle and Tolcarne beaches in Cornwall. This week, Perranporth beach in north Cornwall was temporarily closed as a precaution due to the number of specimens found.
Dr Peter Richardson, MCS Head of Ocean Recovery, says they’ve also been reported recently in Ireland: “Portuguese man o’ war are ocean-going animals, propelled by the wind on their inflatable sail as they fish the depths with their stinging tentacles. Recent persistent winds have blown them from the Atlantic onto our shores.”
Portuguese man o’ war (Physalia physalis) are only occasionally reported in UK waters, but this is the second consecutive year they have turned up in numbers. Last year they were spotted in September on beaches in the South West UK, with significant strandings of the species also reported in in 2009 and 2012.
The Portuguese Man o’ War isn’t a jellyfish but is closely related, and consists of a floating colony of hydrozoans – several tiny marine organisms living together and behaving collectively as if one animal. A purple float, shaped a little like a Cornish pasty, is visible on the water’s surface whilst blue, tentacle-like ‘fishing polyps’ hang below; these can be tens of metres in length.
“It’s the tentacle-like polyps that can give an agonising and potentially lethal sting,” says Dr Richardson. “Because a stranded Portuguese Man o’ war looks a bit like a deflating purple balloon with blue ribbons attached, children will find it fascinating. So, if you’re visiting west coast beaches in the next few weeks it’s well worth making sure you know what these animals look like and that no one picks them up. The stings can be unbelievably painful and in rare cases, fatal. We’d like people to report any sightings of Portuguese man o’ war to our website so we get a better idea of the extent of the strandings.”
White Shark Interest Group Podcast #009 – SURVIVING A SHARK ATTACK with DAVE PEARSON
Ninth in an exciting podcast series from Ricardo Lacombe of the White Shark Interest Group.
Episode 9 of the White Shark Interest Group Podcast, Facebook’s’ largest White Shark specific group, covering science, conservation, news, photography, video and debate.
This episode features Melissa speaking with shark attack survivor Dave Pearson, about his experience, the aftermath and trauma for all involved, and the social media comments and victim blaming following an incident or attack.
Dave is the founder of Bite Club, a support group for survivors of attacks and bites, as well as for the families and friends of victims following a tragic incident.
He also established Beyond The Bite, a support organisation serving many purposes for anyone involved in shark attacks, from helping to get surfers back in the water, to covering costs of families who need to travel to the site of a loved ones attack.
This is a MUST LISTEN for all shark advocates as Dave and Melissa discuss how advocates can really help in the aftermath and reporting of an incident, and how shark advocates can become human advocates at the right time it is needed most. A real eye-opener of an episode.
Bite Club can be found on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/50136… Beyond The Bite can be found here: https://www.beyondthebite.org/ and would appreciate ANY donations you could make to help survivors and their families
Click the links below to listen to the podcast series on the following audio channels:
Join the group: www.facebook.com/groups/whitesharkinterestgroup/
Ultimate Diving Maldives Offer
7 nights at the Bandos Island Resort & Spa in the Maldives – From £2555 per person
Bandos Island Resort & Spa has already welcomed its first guests to the Maldives since March, with more divers heading off this December trying to escape the chilly UK weather. The Maldives is a dream destination, it offers a range of blue lagoons, deserted islands, a true sense of romance and tranquillity but above all amazing diving.
This destination should be on every diver’s bucket list, especially those with a non-diving partner because there is enough going on to ensure everyone will have a great time. The Maldives are the ultimate island paradise with each one offering dazzling white sandy beaches topped with coconut palm trees and turquoise blue lagoons.
Bandos Island is fully encircled by pearly white beaches, turquoise waters and a never-ending blue sky blessed with abundant sunshine. The house reef at Bandos is considered one of the best in North Male Atoll and the convenient location of Bandos allows divers to choose from over 40 impressive dive sites.
Book 7 nights from £2555. Price includes flights from London, speedboat transfers, 7 nights’ accommodation on an all-inclusive basis and 10 shore dives per person. Single supplement applies.
To enquire or book, visit www.ultimatediving.co.uk or give the team a call on 0208 655 6458 and they can give you the lowdown on the destination and diving.
WIN a Bigblue AL-1200NP Dive Torch!!!
For this week’s competition, we’ve teamed up with our good friends at Liquid Sports to give away a Bigblue AL-1200NP Dive...
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For this week’s competition, we’ve teamed up with our good friends at CPS Partnership to give away a Tovatec T3500S Rechargeable Dive Light...
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For this week’s competition, we’ve teamed up with our good friends at fourth element to give away one of their NEW Arctic...
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For this week’s competition, we’ve teamed up with our good friends at Northern Diver to give away one of their NDB5 Holdall...
Sharks Bay Umbi Diving Village is a Bedouin-owned resort with stunning views and a lovely private beach. It is ideal for divers as everything is onsite including the resort's jetty, dive centre and house reef. The warm hospitality makes for a diving holiday like no other. There is an excellent seafood restaurent and beach bar onsite, and with the enormous diversity of the Sharm El Sheikh dive sites and the surrounding areas of the South Sinai, there really is something for every level of diver to enjoy.More Less
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