Smiley fish speaks out about life under the waves! Blenny has his say in new book

Tuesday 30th July 2013

Tompot blenny cpt Paul NaylorTompot blenny cpt Paul Naylor

Children can open a window into the beautiful and often unexpected undersea world around British coasts, aided by charismatic narration from Benny the Blenny in a unique new book, published today.

Using stunning photography and packed with fascinating facts, ‘Benny the Blenny’s Shallow Sea Adventure’, aimed at 7-11 year olds, tells all about this tompot blenny’s amazing life in the sea, just beyond our beaches.

Through a blend of entertainment and education, Benny introduces his neighbours: crabs, cuttlefish, sea anemones, starfish, seals and fish.  He describes how he finds food, avoids predators, bosses creatures that trespass on his territory, stays safe when the sea gets rough and uses those amazing head tentacles!  Much of this action and more has been caught on camera by marine photographer, Paul Naylor.

Benny the Blenny’s Shallow Sea Adventure gives a unique insight into our underwater world and astounds both adults and children alike

The reader can delve deeper into the fascinating information on Benny and his neighbours. ‘Zoom in’ boxes and WOW facts add intrigue to the double-page spreads.  Younger children will love looking at the colourful photographs and be intrigued by the divers and, of course, the crabs!

Benny the Blenny’s Shallow Sea Adventure gives a unique insight into our underwater world and astounds both adults and children alike.  They exclaim: ‘we never realised it was like this close to our beaches!’ 

By revealing the beauty and intrigue of Britain’s undersea habitats in this very accessible way, author Teresa Naylor hopes to encourage support for marine conservation and for organisations such as The Wildlife Trusts and the Marine Conservation Society in their drive for better awareness and protection of our marine life.

Teresa Naylor said:

“Each time I go diving and see Benny the Blenny he is so engaging and mesmerising I surface wanting to tell everyone about him.  He is the best character to tell his story and by doing so, we hope to raise awareness of British marine life and why it’s vital we take more care of our seas.”

Joan Edwards, Head of Living Seas for The Wildlife Trusts, said:

“Benny’s shallow sea adventure shows how special UK shores are.  Interesting and informative, this book allows children to immerse themselves in fascinating facts and inspirational imagery.  We hope it encourages many to enjoy their own marine adventures in the future!”

Contact information:
Teresa Naylor (Author and Publisher)
Office: 01752 863763
Mobile: 07887 768779

Notes for editors:

• Tompot blenny Parablennius gattorugine. Although fairly small (usually about 15 cm long) tompot blennies are the most entertaining fish of British Seas. The wide mouth, eyes set up high on the head and large branched tentacle above each eye all contribute to their comical appearance. They exhibit fascinating territorial, courtship and breeding behaviour. Common around most of Britain (sometimes described as absent from southern North Sea but there have been sightings from Essex and Norfolk) they live where there is the right habitat just off the low water mark to 30 metres deep.

• Teresa Naylor, the author, has a passion and infectious enthusiasm for showing children the wonders of British marine life. This book was inspired by her interactions with “Benny the blenny” and telling her granddaughter Felix all about them. Teresa spends the majority of her free time under, on or near the sea, diving, snorkelling, rock pooling, strand-lining or kayaking. Brought up near Southwold in Suffolk, she enjoyed a 20+ year career as a fisheries biologist, including working on research ships. In 2007, Teresa moved to the South-West and enjoys giving marine life talks in schools and indulging in her marine pursuits whenever she can.

• Paul Naylor , the photographer. Paul Naylor has been fascinated by Britain’s marine life since he first snorkelled in Norfolk beach lagoons 40 years ago.  This led him to study marine biology, start diving and venture into underwater photography to ‘capture’ what he saw.  Paul uses his photographs to open people’s eyes to the beautiful and intriguing animals living beneath the surface of British seas.  Behaviour is a particular interest and he concentrates on portraying the animals going about their busy lives.  Paul writes about marine life for a number of publications and presents the colourful wonders of our seas to a range of audiences from Government councillors to schoolchildren.  He works with conservation organisations to support their vital campaigns for improved protection and awareness of our fabulous but vulnerable marine life.

Tagged with: Living Seas