Seagrass Restoration Project – Join the Survey 27 – 29th May 2023
Seagrasses are the only flowering plants able to live in seawater and pollinate while submerged. They often grow in large groups giving the appearance of terrestrial grassland – an underwater meadow which provide nursery grounds for commercially important fish, such as cod and plaice, and a habitat for a range of species, including octopus, seal and anemones.
Seagrass plants and meadows have the potential to sequester and store huge amounts of carbon dissolved in our seas – this is known as ‘blue carbon’. Similarly to trees taking carbon from the air to build their trunks, seagrasses take carbon from the water to build their leaves and roots. As seagrass plants die and are replaced by new shoots and leaves, the dead material collects on the seafloor along with organic matter (carbon) from other dead organisms. This material builds up forming layers of seagrass sediment, which if left undisturbed, can store carbon in the seafloor for thousands of years.
Considering that seagrass captures carbon at a rate 35 times faster than tropical rainforests, and account for 10% of the ocean’s total burial of carbon (despite covering less than 0.2% of the ocean floor), they are one of our most important natural solutions to the climate change crisis.
One of the UK’s biggest seagrass restoration projects is to take place off the coast of Wales. Five million seagrass seeds are to be planted off the Llŷn Peninsula in Gwynedd and Anglesey, with the aim of creating 10 hectares (25 acres) of seagrass meadow by the end of 2026.
Seagrass charity, Swansea University, North Wales Wildlife Trust and Pen Llŷn a’r Sarnau Special Area of Conservation.The project is being managed by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) in partnership with the Project
seagrass seeds offshore and members of Furness Diving Club answered that call.British Sub-Aqua Club (BSAC) divers have been invited to help plant
Two days diving were scheduled Carreg Y Defaid near Pwllheli planting seeds in about 5m of water. Hour long dives in poor visibility were quite challenging but a great experience.
Further opportunites will be available along with sea grass seed collecting in August
The Great Seagrass Survey 27 – 29th May 2023
We want you to visit the shore, tell us if you locate some seagrass and if you do, to take some measurements and map the bed. This information is vitally important for scientists and restoration practitioners who are working hard to protect and restore seagrass around the UK and abroad.
As a flowering plant seagrass lives in shallow water, usually from 0-7m. One species even lives quite high up on the shore in the intertidal zone. This means that you can join in with the Great Seagrass Survey no matter whether you fancy scuba diving, snorkelling or simply strolling on the beach.