Back in 1990, i read an article on dolphin's in the JEP, (Jersey Evening Post). Local Marine Mammal Recorder at that time, Trevor Copp had been to swim with a wild solitary dolphin off Northumberland called "Freddie". I then contacted Trevor and told him about the bottlenose dolphins i had seen off Noirmont Point the previous year. From then on, i handed in sightings to Trevor who then passed the information on to French researches of the Groupe Mammalogique Normand which is based in Saint Lo. It is here they analyse the data to build a clearer picture of the population and feeding grounds of the dolphins we have in and around Jersey waters.
Carol's Dolphin Project was established back in 1992, when an article about the project appeared in the Jersey Evening Post. My work had caused interest in dolphins island wide and it became a real impact on the conservation of dolphins in and around Jersey water's. This included sighting's recieved from fisherman, boat owner's and the public in general of which i continued to pass over to Trevor
My work has continued over the years. Other issues covered by the project include: killing of dolphins by countries such as the Faroes, Norway, and Japan, and the problems of by-catch (fishing related deaths of dolphins) and of course the captivity industry.
Dolphin Trainer who became a Dolphin freedom fighter!
Back in 1990, i read an article in the International Dolphin Watch magazine about a guy called Ric O'Barry who in the 1960s worked for Miami Seaquarium where he used to train the dolphins for the flipper series. Ric had one of his books in there called "Behind The Dolphin Smile" .
Later, i read other articles about Ric in magazines and one of them stated that Cathy, one of his dolphin's who played the main role in the Flipper series had died in Rics arms, he then realised that capturing dolphins and training them was so wrong. So in 1970, he founded The Original Dolphin Project which is dedicated to freeing captive dolphins and educating people world wide about dolphins and their cry for freedom! It was this that inspired me to carry out my research into dolphin captivity.
Being that Ric used to train dolphin's for the captivity industry and i had only ever encountered dolphin's in the wild, my curiousity got the better of me as to why the captivity industry is so bad when it gives people the impression that it's a marvellous place to keep dolphin's and whales.
After contacting Ric & Helene, I then spent a number of months helping them with their campaign. Helene kindly sent me over some photographs that i then used on my display boards with information to make people aware of what goes on in the captivity industry. To find out why the industry is such a bad place for dolphins and whales, please go to the captivity page and learn more from the expert who used to train the dolphins for the "Flipper" series!
Dolphin's are born to be wild, not confined in tanks until the day they die!
Ric & Helene are now campaigning against the Japanese fisherman who slaughter/capture thousands of dolphins and whales every year for food consumption and sells dolphins to the captivity industry.
JERSEY AGAINST WHALE SLAUGHTER
On Saturday 28th June 1997, myself and other members of J.A.W.S (Jersey Against Whale Slaughter), Greenpeace UK, Friends of the Earth and the Jersey Animal Rights Association held a peaceful protest outside the Island Games which were held at The Springfield Stadium where the Faroes representatives were taking part. The Faroes are responsible for killing hundreds of Pilot Whales every year. Approx forty supporters marched through The Royal Square carrying banners, inflatable whales and wore masks shaped as whale heads until they came to standstill outside the Island Games.
Environment week/Dolphin Watch 16th/17th May 1998
Please click on pics below
Invited on board Earthkinds vessel MV Ocean Defender August 1998
MV Ocean Defender is a 1912 Norwegian built ex-whaler marine conservation vessel and is the worlds first marine wildlife rescue ambulance.
Research on dolphins & seals has been carried out in local waters over the years, some had been seen with young. A National Charity Earthkind's vessel MV Ocean Defender visited our waters charting sightings of the dolphins and seals and where they could be found. The aim of their work was to build up a data to see that these marine mammals were making the area a permanent home and that they were protected. Peter Evans, director of Sea Watch Foundation was working in co-operation with Earthkind at the time stated that it was encouraging to find mammals in these waters which were using it as a breeding ground. The vessel MV Ocean Defender whilst on its way to Jersey from Penzance, the crew had sighted a Minke whale and a pod of approx 100 Common dolphins near Guernsey possibly feeding on Mackeral which is one of their main food sources. Other sightings were two porpoises, a mother and its calf was spotted by Les Minquiers and Common dolphins were also seen a few miles off Corbiere.
Royal Visit at the Royal Agricultural and Horticultural Society
Friday 13th July 2001
HM Queen Elizabeth ll made an official opening to the new head quarters at the Royal Jersey Agricultural & Horticultural. There was a number of stalls in the Exhibition Hall on that day.
17,500 SIGNATURES HANDED IN TO 10 DOWNING STREET
In 2001, I have also been involved with highlighting the problem of By-catch which causes the deaths of thousands of dolphins each year. This brought together myself and Martin Gavet of La Societe Guernesiaise who had already started a petition in Guernsey. And due to this, i carried out my own petition in Jersey because none of the public knew about the number of dolphins we had washed up on our island shores. People didnt even know that there was a problem that was so close to the Channel Islands. It was then i notified all of Jerseys media about the plight and the welfare of our local dolphins.
The result of the Bycatch petition, between myself and Martin Gavet, we had collected 17500 signatures which Martin and colleagues from the Guernsey Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals handed into Number 10 Downing Street on 4th September 2001 as part of By-catch Action Day.
Please click on the link below
Seal with fishing line on Ecrehous
On Wednesday 24th Oct 2001, i recieved an email stating that a seal on Les Ecrehous had fishing line tightly wrapped around its neck and was believed to be the same seal that local authorites had tried to rescue earlier in the year but sadly failed. The seal seemed to spend very long periods with eyes shut and it moved very little showing that it was in pain, so observation was kept to a minimum so that the seal wasnt disturbed! In November 2001, i then contacted the local authorities and i was told by one individual that they didnt have the right equipment in the island to capture a wild seal. They made a second rescue attempt to capture the seal but again sadly failed.
French researcher Gerard Mauger informed us that the seal allowed certain people within 1 metre of its self before entering the sea, but it could have been possible to capture it with a net and offered his services. From then, there seemed to be a lack of interest and communication from certain people.
Seal Entanglement and Rescue Options Document
In February 2002, i recieved a Seal Entanglement and Rescue Options Document which was kindly sent to me by The Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society. I then handed out a number of these documents (6) in total,to a number of local authorities in the island.
This document shows you different methods of capturing seals as well as different equipment that can be used to either capture or cut away certain debris that the seal could be entangled with. (Apparently 3 seal's with this problem).
After contacting Martin Gavet in Guernsey, (2001/2002) before anyone was trained in the island as marine mammal medics, we tried to look for a solution by searching for equipment that could have made it possible to help us capture a seal with netting problems.
We found that getting hold of a net gun was very difficult and the only place we could possibly get hold of one would be in New Zealand. Even then, we found it difficult to locate a supplier!
The only alternative solution would have been to use some other form of netting that could be used to capture the seal. But sadly, we didnt know where this seal could be located!
BDMLR RESCUE COURSE
1st June 2002 Guernsey
Myself and staff from the JSPCA attended the second BDMLR Marine Mammal Medic Course to be held in Guernsey that brought alot of attention not only to participants but also to beach goers in Pembroke Bay. The course was held on 1st June 2002 and was organised by the Cetacean Section of La Societe Guernesaise.
The tuition consisted of a series of three lectures and video presentations given by veterinary experts from BDMLR at La Societe Guernesiase HQ in the morning, on physiology, biology. species identfication and first aid procedures for marine mammals. In the afternoon, we spent practising on life-sized models filled with water to simulate their natural weight. The Pilot Whale weighed 2 tonnes.The Course also gave the opportunity to test out new life saving apparatus - the whale and dolphin pontoon, which was generously donated by NRG International Limited earlier in the year.
Guernsey alone has at least one seal pup stranding a year and in 2001 had a live Common dolphin washed ashore. La Societe Guernesaise has worked hard to ensure that proper facilities and procedures are now in place to deal with such eventualites, together with expertise through training.
Martin Gavet, course organiser, said the course was a "resounding success" and demonstrated the enthusiasm held by many for protecting these beautiful and intelligent species. He was delighted that there were now trained Marine Mammal Medics in most of the Channel Islands.
Highlighting the dangers of hand feeding seals
JEP article Tuesday 1st August 2006
A member of the public told me that they had seen someone hand feeding a wild seal at Les Ecrehous, i was then concerned about the dangers of people hand feeding them because of the amount of diseases seal's carry in their mouths (seal pox and distemper). Seal Finger is an extremely painful infection and can reoccur once bitten.
Seal with netting sadly washed up dead on French Coast mid 2008
I was informed by Bertram Bree who was informed by a French Marine Mammal group in Normandy that the seal with the netting problem was sadly washed up dead on the French Coast, mid 2008
CHARLIE THE RISSO'S DOLPHIN
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