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Dr. Rob McAllen preparing the touch tanks on the North Pier

The ‘Touch Tanks at Lough Hyne’ is an annual event organised by Dr. Rob McAllen (School of BEES) and Terri Kearney (Skibbereen Heritage Centre) as part of National Heritage Week.  Every year the event draws a significant crowd  hoping to interact with some of the marine animals from the Lough and to learn more about their natural habitat and life cycles. Unfortunately the adverse weather conditions on the 21st of August meant that diving to retrieve the animals was not possible and so the event was rescheduled for the 27th instead. Our apologies to anybody who did not get word or see our social media updates on the last minute change of plans and a big thank you to those who came this Saturday instead.

Some of the Deep Maps team were in  attendance on the day to  join Breda on her outreach work at the Lough. It was one of the many occasions where we get to mix business and pleasure in our job.

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Just some of the Deep Maps team pictured at Lough Hyne (L-R): Orla-Peach, Breda, Claire and Mike.

Barring a brief downpour in the middle of the event, weather was wonderful and mild. The Deep Maps team made the most of their time at the event to help spread the word about the project and also to learn a bit about the marine life at the site as well. It is safe to say there was something for people of all ages at the event with our very own Mike being the first of the team to dive right in to the touch tank experience.

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Mike holding an Edible Sea Urchin from the Lough.

We had such a wonderful time exploring the area, learning about the marine creatures from all the Touch Tank participants and talking to visitors to the lough about their experience of West Cork’s coast. We would like to say a big thank you to everybody who participated in our questionnaires at the Touch Tank event at Lough Hyne this weekend. We really appreciated all of your support. Thanks as well to Rob McAllen (UCC), Terri Kearney (Skibbereen Heritage Centre), Cynthia Towbridge (Oregon Institute of Marine Biology) and all of her visiting students.

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 Orla-Peach

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