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FIELD REPORT

IRELANDโ€™S BEAUTY

more than skin deep By Matthew Gianni, co-founder of the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition.

T

he deep sea in the Atlantic to the west of Ireland, though cold, dark and remote from land, is teeming with unique life โ€“ cold-water corals, [XWVOMร…MTL[IVLITIZOM^IZQM\aWN]VQY]M underwater habitats and species hundreds of UM\ZM[JMTW_\PM[]ZNIKM6M_[XMKQM[PI^M JMMVLQ[KW^MZMLWVTaZMKMV\TaIVLQ\Q[TQSMTa \PI\UIVaUWZMIZMaM\\WJMNW]VL

DEVASTATION We would not tolerate bulldozing forests in pursuit of deer to put on the dinner table โ€“ M^MVTM[[[WQN\PMNWZM[\[\WWS\PW][IVL[WN aMIZ[\WOZW_IVLPIZJW]ZMLJQWLQ^MZ[Q\a found nowhere else on earth. Yet something ^MZa[QUQTIZQ[PIXXMVQVOQV\PMLMMX[MIWVM WN\PMTIZOM[\IVLUW[\JQWTWOQKITTaLQ^MZ[M MKW[a[\MU[WV\PMXTIVM\*WI\[][QVOJW\\WU \ZI_TOMIZIZMZI^IOQVOIVMV^QZWVUMV\\PI\ UIaVM^MZZMKW^MZNZWU\PMI[[I]T\IVLIZM LWQVO[WQVX]Z[]Q\WN[KIV\NM_ร…[P[XMKQM[ ,MMX[MIJW\\WU\ZI_TMZ[LZIOUI[[Q^M PMI^aVM\[INร…`ML\W[\MMTXTI\M[IVLKIJTM[ IKZW[[\PMLMMX[MIJML_QXQVOW]\M^MZa\PQVO in their paths including corals and sponges \PI\PI^Mร†W]ZQ[PMLNWZ\PW][IVL[WNaMIZ[ 8QK\]ZM[WN\ZI_TMLIZMI[ZM^MITJIZZMV wastelands, specked with broken corals. Contrast these with images of the un-trawled 26

Irish Wildlife Summer โ€˜15

deep sea, where reefs and seamounts teem _Q\PJQbIZZMร…[PIVLKZ][\IKMIV[IVL UI[[Q^MNIVTQSMKWZITNWZUI\QWV[KITTML[MI XMV[[_IaQV\PMK]ZZMV\[ 4QNMQV\PMLMMXQ[]VQY]MTa^]TVMZIJTM *MKI][M\PMaTQ^MQVM`\ZMUMTaKWTL_I\MZ _Q\PVWM`XW[]ZM\W[]VTQOP\UW[\LMMX[MI KZMI\]ZM[UI\]ZM[TW_TaIVLZMXZWL]KMTI\MQV \PMQZTWVOTQ^M[<PMWZIVOMZW]OPaร…[PNWZ M`IUXTMKIVTQ^M\WaMIZ[WTLIVLLWM[ VW\ZMXZWL]KM]V\QTQ\Q[\WaMIZ[WTL 1V\PMTI\M!![\PM1ZQ[P/W^MZVUMV\ QV^M[\MLTIZOMIUW]V\[WNUWVMa\W[]XXWZ\ \PMLM^MTWXUMV\WNILMMX_I\MZ\ZI_Tร†MM\ \WKI\KPWZIVOMZW]OPaWVTa\W[MM\PM ร…[PMZaOWJ][\MIZTa\PQ[KMV\]ZaI[[\WKS[ KWTTIX[ML6W1ZQ[P^M[[MT[IZM]VLMZ[\WWL \WJMK]ZZMV\TaMVOIOMLQV[]KPLMMX[MI trawling; most of the deep-sea bottom trawlers operating in Irish waters and adjacent high seas areas are from France and Spain. )ZM^QM_Ja\PM-]ZWXMIV+WUUQ[[QWVQV KWVKT]LML\PI\"ยน5IVaLMMX[MI[\WKS[ PI^M[]KPTW_XZWL]K\Q^Q\a\PI\[][\IQVIJTM TM^MT[WNM`XTWQ\I\QWVIZMXZWJIJTa\WWTW_ \W[]XXWZ\IVMKWVWUQKITTa^QIJTMร…[PMZaยบ AM\\PMร…[PQVOKWV\QV]M[IVL\PMMKWVWUQK ZM\]ZVQ[UIZOQVIT<PM-=ยผ[LMMX[MIร…[P KI\KPQ[WVTaIJW]\WVMXMZKMV\WN\PM\W\IT ^IT]MWN\PMร…[PTIVLMLJa-=ร†MM\[QV\PM northeast Atlantic, and the deep-sea bottom

Crab in thickets of the deep-sea coral

species, Lophelia Pertusa. ยฉ Brooke et. al., NOAA OE 2005/Marine Photobank.

\ZI_TKI\KPIKKW]V\[NWZM^MVTM[[

NEED FOR ACTION ;KQMV\Qร…KZMXWZ\[PI^MKWV[Q[\MV\TaQLMV\Qร…ML JW\\WU\ZI_Tร…[PQVOI[\PMOZMI\M[\\PZMI\ \WLMMX[MIKWZITIVL[XWVOMMKW[a[\MU[ ;WKWV^QVKQVOQ[\PMKI[M\PI\\PM=VQ\ML 6I\QWV[/MVMZIT)[[MUJTaPI[ILWX\MLI [MZQM[WNZM[WT]\QWV[[QVKMKWUUQ\\QVO VI\QWV[\W\ISMยน]ZOMV\ยบIK\QWV\WXZW\MK\\PM ^]TVMZIJTMUIZQVMMKW[a[\MU[WN\PMLMMX [MINZWU\PMLM[\Z]K\Q^MQUXIK\[WNJW\\WU \ZI_TQVOIVLW\PMZXW\MV\QITTaPIZUN]TLMMX [MIร…[PQVO <PM-]ZWXMIV+WUUQ[[QWVZMTMI[MLI XZWXW[ITQV2]TaNWZIVM_ZMO]TI\QWV \WUIVIOMLMMX[MIร…[PQVOQV-=IVL

Irish Wildlife Trust  
Irish Wildlife Trust  

Summer 2015