Greencastle family event to focus on whales and dolphins in Inishowen

The group who recently attended the IWDG Live Strandings Training Course in Greencastle pictured attempting to refloat a life-size whale model.
The group who recently attended the IWDG Live Strandings Training Course in Greencastle pictured attempting to refloat a life-size whale model.

An afternoon of activities focusing on the whales, dolphins and porpoises in Inishowen waters is to be held in Greencastle this Saturday, September 6th.

Over the summer months the people of Inishowen were treated to a series of wonderful acrobatic displays by dolphins visiting its coastal waters.

The frequent visits of these cetacean visitors has sparked considerable interest amongst the public and Inishowen has benefited from both local and national media attention.

In particular, the dolphins visiting Malin Head drew many visitors to the area and during Moville’s Lighthouse Swim spectators were treated to extended displays by a large pod of Bottlenose Dolphins around Moville Light.

In response to the increased awareness of these magnificent marine mammals, local environmental group Celebrate Water organised a Live Strandings Training Course in August run by the IWDG and supported by the Loughs Agency.

Now, this coming Saturday 6th September, Celebrate Water are organising an afternoon of activities in the Coastguard Station, Greencastle based on the whales, dolphins and porpoises that visit Lough Foyle.

Saturday afternoon’s activities are free and open to all ages. Greencastle Coastguard Station are kindly opening their doors at 2pm. Inside there will be exhibition material on whales and dolphins that have visited the Foyle and video footage of the dolphins at Moville Light.

There will be a talk by local wildlife ranger Emmett Johnston on how to identify the different species and the importance of submitting records of sightings to the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group through their website.

At 4pm Emmett will take families on a guided excursion to Inishowen Head where they can search for cetaceans. Bring binoculars and wear weather appropriate clothing if you are joining the excursion.

Celebrate Water’s Trish Murphy will also give a demonstration to kids on how to make a telescope and William McElhinney will give people the chance to view live plankton from Lough Foyle. There will be further information on the work of the IWDG and a chance to sign up for the new Constant Effort Watch that will start in Inishowen in the new year.

Trish Murphy commented: “This event is an opportunity for the community to come together to share what we have seen and learned this summer season on the Foyle. Bring along your snaps of the dolphins and maybe we could identify the animals! The IWDG have a catalogue that identifies individual Bottlenose dolphins based on close up photos of their dorsal fin markings. Maybe we will find a frequent visitor or family that returns each year - perhaps even our very own Foyle Fungi!”

For more information please contact Trish Murphy 087 647 8183