CORNISH-L ArchivesArchiver > CORNISH > 2001-01 > 0980966442
Subject: Re: [CON] Artificial reef
Date: Wed, 31 Jan 2001 13:40:42 EST
In a message dated 1/31/01 11:58:17 AM GMT Standard Time,
John Tarling writes:
> Just noticed on Ceefax that a group of divers based in Plymouth is planning
> to set up an artificial reef in Whitesand Bay by sinking an old Royal Navy
> What do the locals think of this?
Artificial reefs can be very attractive to fish, for the shelter they
provide. Sessile marine life (such as anenomes) like the vertical hull
sections which remain relatively free of silt. These reefs are particulalrly
good for marine life where the sea bed is flat and comprises sediment with no
rocks. Once off-shore the sea bed at the east end of Whitsand bay is largely
shingle and sand, turning to fine silt in deeper more southerly waters.
The sinking of these boats is strictly controlled by the authorities and they
are thoroughly cleaned beforehand to eliminate oils and other pollutants.
That said, the Marine Conservation Society are in principle against
artificial reefs, prefering to conserve the natural. Personally, as a diver
and conservationist, I believe if they are well thought out the advantages
outway the disadvantages.
In addition to attracting a richer diversity of marine life they also provide
a recreational attraction. Many divers are more interested in the boat than
the life. This in turn helps the Cornish economy. This wreck would be an
added attraction for Looe Divers (a local dive centre), attracting more
customers. Whether diving with a local business or independantly, visiting
divers will use local facilities such as hotels, restraunts, pubs, shops etc.
I think most locals would vary in opinion from unconcerned to enthusiastic.
One of the most dived ships in Cornwall is in the corner of Whitsand Bay -
the James Egan Layne. At times, in rough weather, it may be the only dive
option - another wreck would add variety.
Kentish man of Cornwall
Now living in Staffordshire.