National Endangered Species Day – Endangered Species of Ireland

Posted 17 May 2024

Whilst some of these “national days” are more fun than anything but some, like National Endangered Species Day, give a real chance to connect with something in the world around us that we might not pay much attention or thanks to.

The preservation of Ireland’s endangered species is not just a matter of ecological concern but a moral imperative. As stewards of this beautiful island, we have a responsibility to protect and preserve its biodiversity for future generations to enjoy. By working together and taking meaningful action, we can ensure that Ireland’s endangered species thrive once again and continue to enrich our lives for years to come.

Ireland’s coastline stretches over 3,000 kilometres, embracing a diverse and vibrant marine ecosystem teeming with life. Beneath the surface of its emerald waters lie a multitude of marine species, from majestic whales and playful dolphins and intricate seagrass beds.
However, this underwater world is facing unprecedented threats, with many marine species on the brink of extinction. In this blog post, we delve into the challenges facing Ireland’s endangered marine species and explore the urgent need for conservation action.

Basking Shark

One such species in need of help is the basking shark (Cetorhinus maximus). As the second-largest fish in the world, basking sharks are a sight to behold as they gracefully glide through the ocean, filter-feeding on plankton. Despite their impressive size, basking sharks are vulnerable to entanglement in fishing gear, habitat loss, and disturbance from boat traffic. Conservation efforts, such as the designation of marine protected areas and the development of shark-friendly fishing gear, are crucial for safeguarding these gentle giants.

Freshwater Pearl Mussel

Another species teetering on the brink of extinction is the freshwater pearl mussel (Margaritifera margaritifera). These remarkable bivalves play a crucial role in maintaining water quality in Ireland’s rivers and streams, yet they have suffered immensely from pollution and habitat degradation. Conservation efforts, including water quality improvement projects and captive breeding programs, are underway to save this vital species from disappearing forever.

Other Species

Ireland’s marine environment is home to a wealth of lesser-known species facing extinction. From delicate seahorses to elusive seagrass meadows, each marine organism plays a vital role in maintaining ecosystem health and resilience. Protecting marine habitats, reducing pollution, and promoting sustainable fishing practices are essential for preserving Ireland’s rich marine biodiversity for future generations.

So, what can be done to protect Ireland’s endangered species? First and foremost, greater awareness and public engagement are crucial. By educating the public about the importance of biodiversity and the threats facing endangered species, we can foster a culture of conservation and inspire action at all levels of society.

This is a crucial part of our ethos here at Exploris. We try and make marine wildlife as accessible possible. We do this in a number of ways; offering significantly reduced rates for all schools for both visits and outreach as well as offering annual membership for locals and frequent visitors so they can spend as much time as they like observing exhibits and learning about the fascinating marine life.








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