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North West Wildlife Trusts launch music video dedicated to the Irish Sea

PUBLISHED: 15:12 06 March 2013 | UPDATED: 21:05 05 April 2013

Bottlenose dolphins off the Isle of Man Photo by Eleanor Stone

Bottlenose dolphins off the Isle of Man Photo by Eleanor Stone

A glimpse of the amazing variety of life under the Irish Sea will encourage people in the North West to help protect its wildlife.

A glimpse of the amazing variety of life under the Irish Sea will encourage people in the North West to help protect its wildlife.

The North West Wildlife Trusts have produced a video and a song, which will capture the imagination of everyone who has visited beaches at Blackpool, Morecambe or Southport.

And the Trusts are hoping that the Flat Fish song by Wierdstring, accompanying the video, will remind North Westerners of the happy times they had by the seaside as well as the vital importance of the Irish Sea to wildlife.

The Government is watering down pleas from the Wildlife Trusts to create 127 Marine Conservation Zones in the seas around the United Kingdom. Instead they have agreed to look at 31 zones and just four of a proposed 19 in the Irish Sea.

Now the North West Wildlife Trusts are calling on everyone in the region to produce a tidal wave of letters and emails to call for designation of the 31 national zones and to reconsider designating all 127 sites producing a network of Marine Conservation Zones where vital wildlife will be protected.

Lancashire Wildlife Trust Conservation Officer and Living Seas Champion Dave Dunlop said: There are many scientific arguments why these areas must be designated as Marine Conservation Zones, not least to protect the numbers of fish and other wildlife in the Irish Sea.

However we also want people to tell the Government why they love the Irish Sea, even if its simply that they have been on a day out by the seaside at Blackpool, Southport or Morecambe. We must protect the wildlife in the Irish Sea and help it to grow for future generations to appreciate.

The new video is to draw attention to some of the variety of wildlife we have on our doorsteps and to ask people to support the Trusts as we try to protect it. Hopefully the song by Wierdstring will stick in peoples heads and appeal to everyone to remind them of our campaign.

Wierdstring are based in Kendal and fiddler Andrew Walter is a Cumbria Wildlife Trust reserve officer.

At least 30 species of shark pass through the Irish Sea, including the basking shark, the world's second largest fish. Others species include thresher, blue, mako and porbeagle sharks. Beneath the surface of the Irish Sea are many diverse habitats including seagrass beds, rocky reefs, mud flats that are home to sea urchins, Dublin Bay prawns and brittlestars, and honeycomb reefs made up of living worms.

About a dozen species of whale, dolphin and porpoise have been recorded in the Irish Sea. The most commonly seen are the harbour porpoise, the bottlenose dolphin and the minke whale.

Leatherback turtles visit the Irish Sea each summer as they pursue swarms of jellyfish, the turtle's staple diet.

The Wildlife Trusts said: The public consultation is the time for us all to have our say about our seas, to tell the Government that their proposals are not sufficient to fulfill their promise to protect our seas, and we have until 31 March 2013 to do it.

View the video here

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