Under The Pier 2017
New records for the event included a Compass Jellyfish – Chrysaora hysoscella, 2 species of pipefish – Broad-nosed Pipefish – Sygnathus typhle and Worm Pipefish – Nerophis lumbriciformis plus 2 species of anemone Sagartia troglodytes and Sagartia ornata kindly identified by marine experts at the University of Bournemouth. This year, species from 12 different groups were recorded with Molluscs top of the list, followed by Birds, then Algae.
Thanks to iWatch Wildlife Tina Whitmore, Isle of Wight Natural History Society Volunteers Roger Herbert and Vidya Wolton and to Bournemouth University’s Alice Hall for sharing their marine biology expertise – looking forward already to UTP 2018!
Artecology Ltd and Alice are researching and developing ways of encouraging biodiversity on built infrastructure and once again the Pier is a brilliant example of how nature has colonised. Take a look at the Artecology albums too for more on this.
Under The Pier is one of a calendar of Isle of Wight events the team here run as part of their work, all aimed at connecting us people with wildlife. The more we learn and explore, the better we feel... and the more we are likely to make space for nature wherever we live and whenever we build.
It really doesn't matter that it rained!... Under The Pier was a wonderful day all round! Dozens and dozens of water-proofed people followed the tide out to take a look at marine landscape and wildlife under Ryde Pier.
Thanks to the ace netting skills of all and Ian's new shrimp net, the trays filled with life while back at base, you could join Dan (The National Poo Museum) with his latest invention, the extremely powerful home-made water rocket (his test run ended in disaster but he's working on it!), create a Sea and Shell Galleries. iWatch Wildlife volunteers were out on the sands helping ID species and at beach basecamp welcoming participants and keeping track of species observed during the event. Though the chalkboards were awash with rain, a respectable 40 species were clocked up on the day, and after expert verification following the event, the total has now risen to the best tally yet of 67 species (63 species in 2016).
Among the star finds this year were the tiny Sea spiders (well done to the young lady called Charlotte!), the black shiny cuttlefish eggs and the chamelon prawn! Star ascidians filled whole trays with their bright oranges too while the periwinkles piled up in others!