Addressing the challenges – making the connection between land and sea - Rob Spray, diver
North Norfolk's Doorstep
Rob Spray – Seasearch East
More pictures and info here
Addressing the challenges
Making the connection
between land and sea
• We train divers to survey wildlifeWe train divers to survey wildlife
– collecting first hand data on sea lifecollecting first hand data on sea life
– organising survey divesorganising survey dives
Southern coasts hadSouthern coasts had
most surveys…most surveys…
• ...East Anglia had fewest...East Anglia had fewest
– but Norfolk has great divingbut Norfolk has great diving
– needed to get divers interestedneeded to get divers interested
The Public (divers +media too)The Public (divers +media too)
Didn't believe there was anything there...Didn't believe there was anything there...
- 'no wildlife worth considering'- 'no wildlife worth considering'
- 'nothing beneath the surface'- 'nothing beneath the surface'
Public perceptionPublic perception
- reduced funding- reduced funding
- reduced support- reduced support
Getting evidence to the outside would help!Getting evidence to the outside would help!
Don't stop at the shore!Don't stop at the shore!
• Much seabed is sand or gravelMuch seabed is sand or gravel
– not barren but...not barren but...
– life collects on wrecks and reefslife collects on wrecks and reefs
• Divers love wrecksDivers love wrecks
– some very easy to findsome very easy to find
– twin girls Vera and Rosalietwin girls Vera and Rosalie
• But we have a reef!But we have a reef!
– longest in Europe, at leastlongest in Europe, at least
– a hidden AONB!a hidden AONB!
20 Miles of reef - with 5 wrecks too20 Miles of reef - with 5 wrecks too
• The heart of the reefThe heart of the reef
– has the biggest featureshas the biggest features
• Gullies? Walls and arches!Gullies? Walls and arches!
- huge slab of chalk lies here- huge slab of chalk lies here
- relatively soft- relatively soft
- eroded by rivers, tide and current- eroded by rivers, tide and current
- cuts channels, leaves walls...- cuts channels, leaves walls...
What shores?What shores?
We have tried to 'rediscover' shore divesWe have tried to 'rediscover' shore dives
- 'cheap' dives attract divers- 'cheap' dives attract divers
- simple dives attract newer divers- simple dives attract newer divers
- newer divers are more wildlife aware- newer divers are more wildlife aware
Shore divesShore dives
- rewarding- rewarding
- and accessible- and accessible
- for more divers- for more divers
Cromer CrabCromer Crab
• Biggest local starBiggest local star
– Up to 25cm acrossUp to 25cm across
– AKA Edible and brown crabsAKA Edible and brown crabs
– smallest MLS in Europesmallest MLS in Europe
• Pie crust shellPie crust shell
– even looks tastyeven looks tasty
...own worst enemy!...own worst enemy!
– dim as welldim as well
– locks in with its elbowslocks in with its elbows
West Runton Residents 1West Runton Residents 1
Marine Conservation Zones!Marine Conservation Zones!
Healthy seas are part of our whole ecosystemHealthy seas are part of our whole ecosystem
- Not just fish!- Not just fish!
- Birds and mammals too!- Birds and mammals too!
Safeguards local fishingSafeguards local fishing
- Better catches- Better catches
- Better future- Better future
We can protect more and we should start now!We can protect more and we should start now!
Unique Reef – On our doorstepUnique Reef – On our doorstep
Visit online for more pictures and information
Seasearch EastSeasearch East
Initially area was least surveyedInitially area was least surveyed
least appreciatedleast appreciated
gave 'opportunities'!gave 'opportunities'!
Some counties are luckier than others!Some counties are luckier than others!
but emphasis generally on surfacebut emphasis generally on surface
and particularly airborne wild lifeand particularly airborne wild life
Underwater wildlife not on wider agendaUnderwater wildlife not on wider agenda
Getting startedGetting started
Made the most of what we hadMade the most of what we had
popularised accessible divespopularised accessible dives
luckily 2 shallow wrecksluckily 2 shallow wrecks
One well known but other had low profileOne well known but other had low profile
helped to have a day of diving (2 dives)helped to have a day of diving (2 dives)
(accidentally) branded the 'day out'(accidentally) branded the 'day out'
'Norfolk's Twin Wreck Challenge''Norfolk's Twin Wreck Challenge'
Things picked up!Things picked up!