http://www.mcsuk.org/beachwatch/events

On Saturday, DD2 and I joined a beach clean team on a remote beach in Cornwall … I say remote, since while it’s near a large city, it isn’t exactly accessible and there is a less rocky, more sandy beach nearby, so it has few visitors, though many walk the coast path above it. In fact, we had to descend to the beach using a rope for the final few feet – the path was almost vertical.

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I don’t have many photos of the detritus that we found … though we each collected half a bin bag full in just over an hour … but it was surprisingly varied. One of the other participants was very knowledgeable about wrecks in the area and was able to tell us the history of some of our finds and to tell us stories about interesting things he had come across over the years.

We spent a lot of our time foraging among the rock pools … there were a lot of rocks visible at low tide, not a beach to swim from  …

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… where we found many varieties of plastic, rubber and an astonishing number of cable ties! There were so many, it’s possible that they too are from a wreck or a lost container. DD2 ventured down to the shore line and came back with metres of netting and rope, which we simply added to a pile at the top of the beach (along with a couple of car tires), rather than carrying them back to the survey. All our finds were collected, and taken to a nearby church hall to be sorted and categorised … but we didn’t stay.

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After eating lunch on the beach, we decided to walk part of the coast path … and I have never been anywhere that has such obvious and extensive bio-diversity. So many different wild flowers, birds, insects and habitats in a 500m stretch of coastline – until we reached the cliffs above a far sandier and therefore more popular beach, where the habit on the hill became overgrown by bracken. So I assume the area where we joined the path had a carefully managed environment – I know, for example, they graze cattle there at times. We didn’t have binoculars with us, so we will return as soon as we can (weather dependent) with binoculars and cameras and a picnic. Not to walk, simply to find a bench to sit and watch … we are certain we saw Dartford Warblers and Stone Chats among others … there must be an ample supply of tiny mammals, too, as we saw several Kestrel and Buzzards overhead.

The weather was perfect, warm and dry but overcast … and if I were to walk the path at high tide I might never realise there was a beach below. Really quite a spectacular find 🙂

 

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