A charitable organization set up in 1999, The Seahorse Trust oversees various marine conservation projects including the research into this unique fish species, with the aim of preserving and conserving fragile eco-systems around the world. Since discovering two types of seahorse (spiny and short snout) at Studland Bay in Dorset, the site has proven to be internationally important.
Photo- Steve Trewhella – a beautiful Spiney seahorse swaying with the eel grass in Studland Bay, Dorset
The bay has a very large concentration of seahorses; over 40 were recorded in 2008 alone, nowhere else in the British Isles is there this concentration of seahorses. The Rio Formosa in Portugal is the only other international site which has recorded population numbers to match Studland Bay. Studland Bay, as well as being a unique site for seahorses, is made up of a large seagrass meadow that has a number of other species resident to it and is a major nursery site for commercial species such as bass and mullet.
Photo – Steve Trewhella – The healthy eel grass at Studland bay, home for the seahorses and many other species. Eel grass plays an essential role in the whole marine eco- system and needs protecting.
An area where the eel grass has been destroyed by boats anchoring in the eel grass.
Unfortunately Studland bay is under major threat of damage due to the large number of pleasure craft that use it, particularly during the summer months when the sea grass meadow is destroyed by anchor damage and anchor chain erosion. Founder of the Seahorse Trust Neil Garrick Maidment comments; “We are very excited to have Kirsty on board as patron of the Seahorse Trust, she is a passionate person about the marine environment and the amazing creatures that live in it. Seahorses are a great species to tell the story about what is happening to the world, especially the marine environment and if we don’t conserve them we will fail at saving the last great wilderness on the planet and one of the most enigmatic species on the planet; the world would be a poorer place without them. Kirsty is a great person to be an ambassador for the trust and as she travels the world in her chosen sport she will spread the word on preserving this incredible animal and we are very grateful to her for giving up her time for us and the Seahorses”.
Kirsty says; “I was honoured to be asked to be a patron for the Seahorse Trust and to help spread the word about the seahorses indigenous to the UK.
I was privileged to witness the magical spiny seahorse in the wild when I dived at Studland Bay in Dorset this weekend with Seahorse Trust founder Neil Garrick-Maidment, along with photographer, volunteer and marine conservationist Steve Trewhella and other passionate volunteers.
Its essential to remember that there is a whole world under the waves, boats and boards and if we want to protect and save all the endangered marine species and their habitat we have to all put in a conscious effort to help get our oceans and marine life protected. As a professional kitesurfer and passionate surfer and windsurfer, the ocean has been my life and passion since I was very young. The encounters I have had with marine life on top and underneath the water are better than any wave I have ridden and any competition I have won and I want to be able to give back to the ocean before its too late. I hope to inspire others to join the team effort and ensure a future for the endangered UK seahorse and other marine life not only in the UK but around the world. ”
Please please join the Seahorse Trust and adopt a magical seahorse!
Kirsty’s involvement with the Seahorse Trust is just one of many marine conservation projects Kirsty has planned around the world.
To find out more about The seahorse Trust or to adopt a seahorse go to www.theseahorsetrust.org Photos by Steve
Photo- Steve Trewhella A beautiful spiney seahorse
Founder of The Seahorse Trust Neil Garrick-Maidment with his passionate team of supporters and volunteers.
For further information or images please contact Lindsay Chant; Icons and Outcasts, email@example.com