Marine News

Sent in by John Kinsman, station manager at Coastwatch St Monans, east Fife

Greenpeace Activists board trawler

Greenpeace activists boarded a supertrawler in the North Sea last month and prevented it from fishing in what it claims are protected waters. The environmental group said the trawler Helen Mary was fishing in the Central Fladen marine protected area east of Scotland.

Activists from the Greenpeace ship Esperanza boarded the 117 metre vessel and hung a banner reading “Ban supertrawlers now”. They placed fishing deterrents in the supertrawlers nets before the Germany registered Helen Mary left the area. Last year the same vessel was detained out at sea by Marine Scotland on suspected fishery offences.

Our marine correspondent John Kinsman says the supertrawlers are high intensity fishing trawlers capable of catching hundreds of tonnes of fish each day using nets up to one mile long. Greenpeace say the intensity with which they fish negatively impacts the entire marine ecosystem.

Feature Image shows Greenpeace UK activists unfurl a banner reading ‘Ban Supertrawlers Now!’ Credit: Suzanne Plunkett / Greenpeace

Coastwatch busy

The month of October was a fairly busy month for Coastwatch St Monan’s team. They were on duty at their lookout station every day. They were alerted by pager to a few incidents by HM Coastguards. These included an overdue kayaker, a broken down creel boat, and ‘tombstoners’ at the village harbour. The full St Monans Coastwatch team who attended these call outs were operations manager John Kinsman, deputy manager Anne Kinsman, John McLean, Bob McDonald, Karen Dodson, Beth McLean, Cameron McDonald, Kevin McBain.

Last month Coastwatch St Monans celebrated its 10th Anniversary of watch keeping. Set up in 2010 to provide safety at sea, on cliffs, beaches, harbours and coastal paths and to assist HM Coastguards in search and rescue. Coatwatch St Monans station is based in an historic windmill to the east of the village and equipped with computers, VHF radios, mobile phones, and full rescue gear. Over the past 10 years the team has attended many incidents including missing persons, cliff rescues, boats and kayakers in trouble and more.

Coastwatch St Monans is a non-paid volunteer organisation and is one of 11 stations around the coast of Scotland and eastern England.

John Kinsman keeping watch for a missing kayaker