The Shannon estuary is one of the most important sites for the conservation of cetaceans (whales, dolphins and porpoises) in Ireland, as it is home to the only known resident group of bottlenose dolphins and is a known calving area.
The estuary has been nominated as a candidate SAC (Special Area of Conservation) under the EU Habitats Directive. Under this Directive the National Parks and Wildlife Service are obliged to designate areas (SAC) for species on Annex II, these include bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) and harbour porpoises (Phocoena phocoena). To date the Shannon estuary is only SAC in Ireland for bottlenose dolphins. There are two sites under discussion for harbour porpoise (Blasket Islands, Co Kerry and Roaringwater Bay, Co Cork) but these have not been formally designated.
Pilot whale live strands in the Shannon estuary
A pilot whale live stranded on 29 June in Poulnasherry Bay. Despite the best efforts of local IWDG members, it was found dead this on the 30 June near Moyasta, Co Clare.
2 July 2004
Pair-trawling in the Shannon estuary SAC
The SDWF have once again raised the issue, with the Department of Marine, of pair-trawling within the Shannon estuary SAC . Commercial fishing is a notifiable activity and it should be monitored to ensure any impact is minimal.
10 February 2005
Multibeam survey to adopt cetacean mitigation procedures
A multibeam survey of the Shannon estuary, carried out as part of the Irish National Seabed Survey, will adopt cetacean mitigation procedures to reduce impact on bottlenose dolphins in the estuary.
22 March 2005
Shannon estuary water levels rise
Water levels in the Shannon estuary have already led to predictions that sea levels in Ireland will increase by 20-88cm over the next 80 years.
30 May 2006
Oil spill in the Shannon estuary
On Sunday 10 December the SDWF were informed by Mike Fitzsimmons of the Shannon Regional Fisheries Board that on oil spill had occurred at Aughinish Aluminia in the Shannon estuary.
11 December 2006
SDWF concerned about lack of Conservation Plan for the estuary
SDWF have written to Minister of Environment Dick Roche requesting advice on the current status of the Lower River Shannon cSAC Conservation Plan and the timetable for implementation.
23 January 2007
Jet Skier charged with disturbing dolphins
A Jet skier has been accused of disturbing bottlenose dolphins in the Moray Firth SAC.
8 February 2007
Striped dolphin was successfully refloated at Lahinch, Co. Clare
A striped dolphin was successfully refloated at Lahinch, Co. Clare this morning but it might restrand over the next few days.
9 March 2010
Striped dolphin live stranded in Shannon Estuary
A young striped dolphin live stranded in Poulnasherry on the north side of Shannon Estuary on Saturday morning 24 April 2010.
24 April 2010
SDWF win Shannon dolphin contract
SDWF won a compretitive tender to carry out an abundance estimate.
29 July 2010
SDWF prepare oil response plan for Shannon Estuary
The Shannon Dolphin and Wildlife Foundation have prepared an Oil Spill Response Plan
in the advent of an oil spill in the estuary.
6 June 2011
Large number of dolphins reported off Shannon Airport
A large group of bottlenose dolphins was observed on Tuesday 30 August 2011 off Shannon Airport.
30 August 2011
Bottlenose dolphin successfully refloated in the Shannon Estuary
A bottlenose dolphin was live stranded this morning at Beal strand, North Kerry but was "successfully" refloated.
1 June 2012
SDWF publish study on abundance estimates of the Shannon Dolphins.
A recent paper in Aquatic Mammals suggests the Shannon dolphin population is stable.
6 June 2012
SDWF welcomes Strategic Integrated Framework Plan for Shannon Estuary
SDWF made a short submission to the consultation process flagging some issues of relkevance to bottlenose dolphins and their habitats.
24 January 2013
CN1 - the first Shannon dolphin - seen in Brandon Bay on 25 May 2013
As we enter our 21st year of study of the Shannon dolphins. No 1 - the first dolphin photographed 20 years ago - was recorded this weekend in Brandon Bay, Co Kerry.
27 May 2013
Shannon dolphins discussed on Mooney Goes Wild
A long discussion on the Shannon dolphins was recently aired on RTE Radio 1 Mooney Goes Wild.
1 June 2013
Bunratty dolphins safe and well in Shannon Estuary
The three dolphins that were in the river in Buratty in April have been observed in the Shannon stuary from a dolphin tour boat
7 June 2013
The bottlenose dolphin refloated in the Shannon last June 2012 has been seen with its calf
the bottlenose dolphin live stranded in the Shannon Estuary last June (2012) has been confirmed as having a calf
27 June 2013
SDWF write to Minister about pair trawling in the Shannon Estuary
The SDWF propose that no pelagic fishing should occur within the Lower River Shannon Special Area of Conservation.
12 January 2014
SDWF Oil Spill Response Plan
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