This month, we be were busy raising the alarm about the huge rise in dead seals washing up and being reported across Ireland’s coastlines.n 2020 SRI recorded a total of 202 dead seal reports, nearly DOUBLE that of 2019! And the trend continues: so far 2021 is starting off strong, with double the numbers reported from this time in 2020
Meet Falafel our Climate Emergency Ambassador!
Following a stormy few days in November 2019, our rescue team were called out to Arklow, to assess the state of a grey seal pup who was stranded and in very poor condition. In a battered, lethargic state, sporting obvious injuries to her muzzle, nose and belly our team decided to lift Falafel from the beach, which is a common hangout for local dog walkers. She was admitted to intensive care at our rescue centre in Courtown.
Strangely, falafel was adorned with three red, purple and blue spray painted dots on her lower back. After significant research into the source of these dots, our team reached out to The Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales.
They had been monitoring pups at the Skomer Island grey seal colony, during pupping season. Their team was able to identify Falafel, confirming the most recent location she was seen with her mother.It is not uncommon for grey seal pups to be washed from the shores of their rookeries during large storms.
In fact, during Ex-hurricane Ophelia in 2018, one of the UK’s largest seal colonies, Ramsey Island lost 75% of its pups. Unseasonal weather events disrupt the life cycles of a vast number of species, who have adapted to the weather patterns that have developed over the past several millennia.
Paul O’Gorman of MIT, stated in Nature Geoscience that, for every 1°C in temperature increase, the atmosphere can hold 7% more moisture. The consequence of this is a marked increase in frequency and severity of extreme weather events; such as, the draughts, floods and hurricanes being recorded worldwide.
Although, extreme weather events and storm surges are having a growing impact on human lives and the global economy, those affected most by our changing climate, are the wildlife who call the threatened marine environment home.
WANT TO GET INVOLVED AND HAVE AN IMPACT?
Here’s your very own Sustainability Toolkit!
- Eat less meat and don’t waste food (more info).
- Insulate your home and switch to renewable energy. In Ireland, you can choose to purchase your office or household energy from SSE Airtricity.
- Plant native trees, along all waterways, especially those passing through agricultural land OR donate to our Courtown Harbour Restoration Project!
- Use eco-friendly transport: walk, bike, utilise public transport or invest in an electric vehicle. Where possible source local products to significantly decrease the impacts of international shipping
- Support global female education efforts and contraception initiatives which are proven to reduce population growth.