Manx Wildlife Trust’s Marine Life Mega Tanks make a splash

Thursday 27th July 2017

Spiny Starfish © Wayne Hargreaves

Over the weekend (22nd and 23rd July) the Manx Wildlife Trust had an assortment of marine animals on display at the Port Erin Beach and Sea Festival.

Historically, MWT has had its Marine Life Mega Tanks at the Queenie Festival in Port St Mary but this year MWT joined in with the fantastic Port Erin Beach and Sea Festival and what a great way to start the school holidays. There were plenty of activities for the children to join in, from mascot racing to kite flying to water slides and of course the Marine Life Mega Tanks.

As usual the marine tanks were a big hit with the all the family. There were a great variety of critters in the tanks, for example crabs, lobsters, sea hares, scallops, starfish and urchins, most of which were collected from Port Erin bay. Even an octopus made an appearance on Sunday. It’s the biggest event that MWT runs and a fantastic way of promoting and showcasing the amazing marine life in our waters and the importance of protecting it.

MWT and DEFA provided plenty of information about the marine environment, focusing on Ramsey Marine Nature Reserve, sustainable fisheries and the current 0-3nm marine protected area consultation that is currently out for comment. MWT also ran a craft corner where children could colour in marine animals and write down why they thought marine protected areas were important. There was also an underwater display, sponsored by the Isle of Man Arts Council and supported by artwork from local schools around the Island, again showcasing the wonderful marine life in our waters and the schools talented children.

The Marine Officer, Lara Howe said “It’s a great way for people to see these animals; normally they wouldn’t see them unless they were divers. Also the public are quite surprised by the species collected, that they are all borrowed fromManx waters.”

However, the animals are wild and therefore it’s important to highlight that great care is taken to ensure that the animals stay healthy and stress is kept to a minimum, before being safely returned back into Port Erin bay from where they were collected.

A massive thanks has to go to all the volunteers who helped the Trust make this a successful event. Also to Discover Diving and the divers for collecting the critters for the tanks. It couldn’t go ahead without their help and support. Thanks also go to Tesco’s bags of help for their support.



Tagged with: Events, Funding, Living Seas, Marine Life, Sea Festival, Volunteering