England’s coastline is teeming with marine wildlife, from fish to dolphins, seals to porpoises and there are even a few whales and harmless basking sharks. Also see the post on England’s jellyfish (including keeping dogs safe, so they don’t get stung, which can even happen from a dead one).
The best way to help all marine creatures is simply to live a simple zero-waste life. Don’t drop litter and take anything with you. If you smoke, use a personal beach ashtray, and take fishing litter with you. If you eat fish, only buy those labelled sustainably, to avoid ‘by-catch’ (when seals, turtles, whales and dolphins are caught in fishing nets, then left to die). It’s only recent the Scottish government acted to stop the shooting of seals who ate fish (their natural diet).
Noise pollution is harm to marine creatures (mostly from loud boats and military testing). After lockdown, one pod of marine creatures began to attack boats (annoyed at return of noisy fishing boats).
Don’t release balloons or fire lanterns (like 70% of everything that goes up in the air, it lands in the sea). Balloons explode mid-air and fall to the ocean (eaten by turtles, as they resemble jellyfish). And fire lanterns leave behind metal spikes, are fire hazards and get mistaken for coastal flares (putting lifeguard lives at risk). Kites can slice off bird wings or entangle (if you use them, choose ones with biodegradable string, but don’t use at dawn or dusk, when birds more likely flying)
Read tips to be a greener boater (including taking a course to be a wildlife-friendly boater). Jetskis harm marine creatures worldwide (including manatees in Florida and the Caribbean). If you are using one, always follow local manatee boating codes.
Found Injured or Abandoned Marine Creatures?
Call British Marine Life Rescue (RSPCA or Coastguard can put you through). Follow advice given (seal pups can drown if put back in the sea, and never cover a whale’s blowhole as this could stop it breathing). You may be asked to cover creatures with wet towels (or hose with buckets of water, until help arrives).
Get together with friends to take a Marine Mammal Medic Course. You will then be called out to help in emergency situations, for your local area.