IWDG Consulting provided an experienced Marine Mammal Observer during dredging operations in the Shannon Estuary. The estuary is home to the only resident population of resident Bottlenose dolphins in Ireland and is a designated Special Area of Conservation (SAC). As such it is essential that the effects of any proposed works be mitigated against. Our consultant was onsite for the duration of the project implementing the NPWS “Guidance to Manage the Risk to Marine Mammals from Man Made Sound Sources in Irish Waters.”
IWDG Consulting were awarded the contract to carry out 6 visual harbour porpoise surveys in the Dublin Bay SAC this Summer. Densities of harbour porpoise in Dublin Bay are among the highest in the country to date. Single platform line transect surveys will be carried out in order to derive local density and abundance and will form part of Ireland’s reporting requirements under the Habitats Directive. The first survey was completed last week in perfect sea conditions which resulted in a high encounter rate for our team. The IWDG Consulting team consisted of Dr. Simon Berrow, Dr. Joanne O’Brien and Clowie Russell.
IWDG Consulting have been awarded a contract to provide two MMO’s for a 3D seismic survey in Irish waters. PGS were selected by Woodside as the seismic contractor for the project which is due to start mid-May, with duration of the works expected to last for 75 days. Consultancy manager for IWDG Consulting; Enda McKeogh said “Our in-depth knowledge of the NPWS guidelines to Manage the Risk to Marine Mammals from Man-made Sound Sources in Irish Waters along with the quality of our experienced consultants will allow us to ensure that the proposed works will have minimal affects on the marine mammal populations in the area.”
IWDG Consulting have been awarded a six-year contract to deliver the Marine Mammal Mitigation Plan associated with the Alexandra Basin Re-development project being rolled out by Dublin Port. IWDG are sub-contractors to RPS and are responsible for implementing the conditions of license recently issued bu An Bord plenala. As part of the mitigation plan, SAM and real-time PAM will be deployed to aid mitigation as well as provision of MMOs for visual mitigation and monthly seal surveys. Chief Science Officer with the IWDG Dr Simon Berrow said “This is an exciting project to be involved with as Dublin Bay has such a wealth of marine wildlife. This project enables us not only to ensure any impacts are minimal and not significant but to improve our knowledge and understanding of such an important site for marine mammals”.
One of IWDG Consulting’s surveyors, Darren Craig, is currently onboard the R.V. Celtic Explorer during the mackerel egg survey along with William Hunt of UCC – MaREI (Centre for Marine & Renewable Energy, Ireland). They are recording any sightings of marine megafauna encountered throughout the survey, including cetaceans (whales & dolphins), seals, turtles, sharks and other large fish such as sunfish and tuna. You can find out what they have seen so far on the scientists at sea blog: