Archive for the 'Marine' Category

10th June 2012, Sunday

Every cloud…

The extremely windy weather of the last few days has washed up tens of thousands of common starfish along the shore. This is providing easy pickings for the large gulls that can pull them to pieces and swallow them. This could benefit the other seabirds if it reduces the large gull appetite for eggs and chicks, but the little terns are not taking any chances and chase all the big gulls away from their colony… Read the rest of this entry »

15th February 2012, Wednesday

Pett Level Beach Survey

This was postponed due to heavy snow a couple of weeks ago, but will take place this Sunday, 19th February at 10am. Meet up on the sea wall by the Smuggler Pub and Pett Level Rescue Boat slipway. 

Be prepared with warm clothes, sturdy footwear and gloves.  Refreshments provided.

Contact Andy Dinsdale on

3rd February 2012, Friday


Due to the forecast snow, the Pett Level beach survey on Sunday 5th February has been moved to Sunday 19th February at 10am.

The survey at Rye Harbour tomorrow (Saturday) will still take place.

17th December 2011, Saturday

Common Cockles

A walk along the beach this morning at low water found all the big gulls resting, not bothering to feed. It soon became clear that there was still so much to eat on the beach after the storms – in places the beach was covered in common cockles and some still had the soft body in tact and visible to any gull. In the photo above at least four still have the orange body visible. For a close up ….. Read the rest of this entry »

16th December 2011, Friday

After the storms

This weeks storms have changed the shoreline dramatically with enormous quantities of shingle and sand transported eastward by longshore drift. In some places the shore has migrated 10 metres inland and a metre down. With such disturbance to the foreshore it’s not surprising that there has been carnage among the invertebrates that lived there. The most noticeable casualties have been thousands of common starfish (above), but also quite a few sea mice. This is all good news for the large gulls and there are hundreds gorging themselves on the starfish. The storms may also be responsibile for a very tired looking shag at the Mary Stanford Lifeboat House this morning. We were lucky that yesterdays storm took a more southerly track, or last nights high tide may well have breached the storm crest…

3rd November 2011, Thursday

Camber Shark


On Sunday 23rd October I came accross this dead shark on Camber Beach. I couldn’t quite believe it to start with as it’s not really what you expect to find at Camber. I e-mailed the photo to the Marine Conservation Society who have ID it as a juvenille Blue Shark. More info here. From Nikki Lambert, Mallydams RSPCA.

30th October 2011, Sunday

Grey Seal

On Saturday afternoon a large Grey Seal was hauled out for about an hour on the shore at Rye Harbour, despite a small crowd of onlookers and dogs. It looked unwell and was a potential risk to the onlookers, so I called Mallydams RSPCA. Then, almost immediately the seal turned and loped off into the receding tide… and I was able to cancel the RSPCA call out! Photo by Mike Slavin.

28th July 2011, Thursday

Wildlife at Glyne Gap and Galley Hill Area

28/07/11: Rhizostoma Pulmo Jellyfish 300m offshore from Galley Hill. Numerous Sandwich Tern and Common Tern, with 13 Turnstones on shore. Wheatear at Glyne Gap in evening.

Also seen recently Red Admiral butterfly on Galley Common, 2 Common Seals off Galley Hill. Numerous House Sparrows and Chiffchaffs across Galley Hill and Galley Common

21st July 2011, Thursday

Tern failure

As I woke today I heard on the radio about swarms of jellyfish –click here – and later found this article – click here. It is worrying that all 3 species of tern nesting at Rye Harbour have had almost zero productivity this year, but I haven’t yet heard of jellyfish swarms in Rye Bay.

20th July 2011, Wednesday

What will we find on the beach this time?

This weekend two beach surveys are taking place:

These are part of the Marine Conservation Society’s Beachwatch campaign where up to 400 beaches around the U.K are surveyed for all the marine debris that has found it’s way there.  Generally, rubbish of plastic origin makes up 70% of all litter found, with fishing nets and ropes very common.  Our local beaches have turned up toys from Europe, a water colour painting and even a message in a bottle.

Volunteers join in to scour the beach for all traces of rubbish, attempt to identify it all and send the results off to the Marine Conservation Society to be part of a national report.  It can take 2 to 4 hours recording but we are able to make a short stretch of beach litter free for all, including the marine wildlife too.  All the plastic can be around for thousands if not millions of years and is a deadly hazard for birds, fish, cetaceans, seals and others.

All info about these beach surveys can be found at

Rye Harbour Nature Reserve has organised the surveys at Rye Harbour on Saturday 23rd July and Pett Level on Sunday 24th July, both starting at 10am .

If anyone would like to join in please can they contact Lucy Balmforth at or 01797 227784 for Rye Harbour surveys, or Andy Dinsdale at for Pett Level surveys.