Explore the shore this National Marine Week

From the comfort of your own home, with a DIY rockpool ramble or a socially distanced sea-watch, help The Wildlife Trusts discover and celebrate our wonderful shore and seas

National Marine Week runs from 25th July to 9th August 2020 – a full fortnight to take advantage of the tides. No matter where you are around the UK, join The Wildlife Trusts in celebrating our fin-tastic seaside wildlife. 

Enjoy a fabulous programme of events, including online webinars, virtual tours of the shore and even Zoom-based beach tot events where mini marine biologists can learn about the wonders of the sea at home. And if you are lucky enough to get to the seaside, some Wildlife Trusts are organising socially distanced seashore events, so check online before you go.

Download the brand-new Do-It-Yourself Shore Life Spotter Guide from The Wildlife Trusts' website and explore some of the native, common and invasive species that live between the low and high tide lines along our coast. Adventurous DIY rocky shore ramblers are being encouraged to record and submit their findings to The Wildlife Trusts, which will help scientists to monitor the health of shore life across the UK. 

Liz Bonnin, science and natural history broadcaster, says:
“Our shorelines offer a tantalising glimpse of the incredible underwater world surrounding our island home. By taking part in the Wildlife Trusts’ National Marine Week challenge you’ll not only be immersing yourself in the wonders of our coasts, you’ll also be playing your part in bringing our seas back to life and helping to support a greater understanding of our spectacular marine creatures.” 

Joan Edwards, director of marine conservation at The Wildlife Trusts, says: 
“From hypnotising sea-slugs and sensational stalked jellyfish, to the common beadlet anemone, the more people explore the shore, the more they discover, learn and want to protect what our wonderful seas and coasts have to offer. As a part of National Marine Week this year, not only do we want people to explore marine life near them, but we want everyone to take action and stand up for the highest levels of protection for our seas.”

The Wildlife Trusts believe Highly Protected Marine Areas (HPMAs) offer a ‘gold standard’ of marine protection and are calling on Government to commit to an ambitious HPMA delivery plan within a year. This new type of marine designation would help our seas to recover, by banning all damaging activities and only allowing low levels of other non-harmful activities in these areas. Removal of harmful pressures would allow important habitats and wildlife to flourish and recover to as natural a condition as possible. The public can add support for HPMAs online via The Wildlife Trusts’ website. 

Whether or not you are heading to the beach, The Wildlife Trusts’ website includes an online treasure chest of information to help celebrate and inspire during National Marine Week:

  • Keep the kids occupied with the new DIY Shore Life Spotter Guide
  • Top tips for making the most of the coast this summer, rockpooling guides and more
  • Information on our amazing marine wildlife
  • Blogs from The Wildlife Trusts’ experts 
  • Special editions of Wildlife Wednesdays weekly videos during National Marine Week.
  • Details on how to enter a Marine Wildlife Experiences Competition*. Send in your best photos, videos and stories about marine wildlife experiences to be in with the chance to win a copy of The Essential Guide to Rockpooling by Julie Hatcher and Steve Trewhella, or one of two pairs of binoculars from Opticron.

All this information is available free online from The Wildlife Trusts’ website .

Although most events for National Marine Week have had to be cancelled this year, some coastal trusts may still run reduced activities over the summer. Check with local Wildlife Trusts for their latest events programmes.  Highlights include a snorkel trail in Scotland, rockpool ramble pack in Ulster, a virtual dive with dolphins experience in Wales, a coastal tale trail in the North West, a bio-blitz in Cornwall, a paddle board safari in Alderney and more.

Dive into National Marine Week

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Help bring our seas back to life

Highly Protected Marine Areas could be the gold standard of marine protection. The first of their kind in the UK.

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Alexander Mustard/2020VISION