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barge Solent 18 March 2022

England’s largest ever seagrass planting hits new milestone

£2.5m project led by Natural England has now planted seagrass across a total of 3.5 hectares of seabed. Seagrass can be as effective at storing carbon as our woodlands but UK has lost around half of its seagrass since the mid-1930s. Project partners to share expertise with marine conservation projects taking place around Europe to…

Restoration barge. Credit Jay Stone

10,000 bags of seagrass seeds to be planted at Plymouth Sound

Volunteers are busy packing 10,000 bags of seagrass seeds for planting underwater in Plymouth Sound. Research shows at least 44 per cent of the UK’s seagrass has been lost since 19361. This restoration work is part of England’s largest seagrass planting effort under the LIFE Recreation ReMEDIES partnership, led by Natural England. The partnership’s restoration…

Ocean Image Bank/Michiel Vos

Plymouth’s underwater success story for COP26

Planting grass on the seabed in Plymouth is one of the UK’s green success stories being shared at COP26 in Glasgow. The ambition to take seagrass seeds from healthy underwater meadows, cultivate them in the laboratory and then plant a total of eight hectares sounds like science fiction. But already one hectare – the equivalent…

Solent seagrass/Project Baseline UK

Seeds collected for Solent seagrass restoration

Scuba divers have collected more than half a million seeds from healthy seagrass meadows around Osborne Bay, Yarmouth and Bouldnor in the Solent for replanting in parts of the Solent where seagrass has been lost or degraded. More seed collection dives will take place in Looe and Falmouth in Cornwall this month. It is part…

Restoration team - credit Ocean Conservation Trust

England’s largest seagrass planting programme underway

Today (21 April 2021), work on England’s largest seagrass planting effort is taking place in Plymouth Sound National Marine Park. It is estimated that the UK may have lost up to 92 per cent of its seagrass1. Factors including wasting disease, pollution and physical disturbance have been identified as contributing causes.  Seagrass meadows provide homes…

Yarmouth 2018 Zostera marina in foreground credit Tim Ferrero/Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust

Yarmouth is pioneering marine project’s new moorings

Two types of environmentally friendly moorings, known as Advanced Mooring Systems (AMS), have been installed in the Solent, near Yarmouth Harbour on the Isle of Wight. They are part of a trial being carried out by the LIFE Recreation ReMEDIES project, a marine conservation project to protect and restore the seabed at five areas along…

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Squirt, cuttlefish at the NMA/Geffrey Back

Seagrass Species Spotlight: Cuttlefish

Cuttlefish are a mainstay of the seagrass bed community and we can spot them all around the UK.

Wildflower seed bombing outreach in Wembury

The seabed and YOU

Our new Education Officer, Esther Farrant, based at Ocean Conservation Trust, talks us through some of the outreach and education highlights from her first few months…  ReMEDIES outreach events and education programme have really been ramping up recently. Several primary schools in Plymouth have now been involved in a seed planting workshop and are keen…

Seagrass seeds/Ocean Conservation Trust

Life in the lab

Our new seagrass cultivation officer, Amelia Newman based at Ocean Conservation Trust, has just finished preparing the seagrass lab at the National Marine Aquarium ready for the next stage of our restoration work…  It’s a busy time in the lab as we care for more than 3 million seagrass seeds that will be used in…

Zostera noltii/Jo Sinclair

Protecting the Essex Estuaries

We partnered Essex Wildlife Trust and trained a team of volunteers to conduct recreational activity observations along the Essex coastline over the summer. Alan Kavanagh, Natural England’s Essex Site Lead, and volunteer Cameron Alston, explain how and why we did it… Why Essex Estuaries? With 350 miles of varied coastline, Essex provides unique opportunities to…

Screw pile installation/Scott Finch

WATCH: Installing helical screw piles

Our team has been installing helical screw piles at Jennycliff and Cawsand Bays in Devon and Cornwall. They are to support Advanced Mooring Systems (AMS) for boat moorings, Voluntary No-Anchor Zone markers and swim markers. AMS have been specially designed to minimise interaction with the seabed, reducing the potential damage to sensitive seabed habitats. Watch…

Allegra at anchor/Jean-Luc Solandt

When volunteers help conservation

Science is difficult and must be done by professionals. Or must it? When Marine Conservation Society (MCS) was offered the chance to work with a volunteer yachtsman, Mr Chris Cooling, aboard his ocean-going yacht (Allegra), we grabbed the chance with both hands. In marine conservation, budgets aren’t at the levels required to map every single…

Diver surveying seagrass. Image: Matt Slater

Surveying Cornish Seagrass and Maerl

High summer diving in Cornwall doesn’t come much more iconic than a trip out of Porthkerris on the Lizard Peninsula, transferring your dive kit over the beach and up the gangplank onto the boat

Year 1 children of Goosewell Primary proud of their seagrass seedling. Photo credit Goosewell Primary School

Back to School with the Seabed

With schools returning after the summer break, we are looking forward to getting back in the classroom to have loads of fun learning about the seabed.

Seagrass in the Solent during seed collection dives in July 2021

Seasearch survey in the Solent

Hampshire Seasearch volunteers surveyed a large seagrass bed just east of the busy port of Yarmouth, Isle of Wight, at the end of June.

Rockpool fun. Credit Ocean Conservation Trust

A Fun Summer of Seabed Activities

With the Summer Holidays in full swing, we are all looking for fun things to do, whatever the weather. The Ocean is a great source of inspiration for activities, both outdoors and inside your homes.

SGP

ReMEDIES at Sail GP

Now that summer is here and public events are slowly starting to return, the ReMEDIES partnership is getting out and about to showcase our work, starting at Sail GP.

Boats on the water at Cawsand

Surveying Advanced Mooring Systems

Jean-Luc Solandt of the Marine Conservation Society took a dive at Cawsand Bay to record the effects of introducing new Advanced Mooring Systems.