Spike in interest for Oban’s Porcupines conference

Kerry Mackay from The GRAB Trust (Group for Recycling in Argyll and Bute).

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The Porcupine Marine Natural History Society will host its annual conference on March 14 and 15 at the Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS) at Dunbeg.

The event, which usually takes place in England, will feature many local speakers, including representatives from the Hebridean Whale and Dolphin Trust, St Andrews University Marine Mammal Unit, the GRAB Trust, Open Seas and Basking Shark Scotland.

Topics covered will range from the latest research, conservation stories, taxonomy and citizen science, and attendees will also hear about some of the work currently being carried out at SAMS.

There will also be the opportunity to participate in a field trip on Friday March 13 at Clachan Seil.

The presentations on offer include:

The Hebridean Whale and Dolphin Trust is celebrating 25 years of marine
mammal conservation on the west coast of Scotland, and its education
manager Pippa Garrard will speak.

Texa Sim, a PhD student at SAMS, will present information about the behaviour of harbour porpoises around fish farms.

The GRAB Trust (Group for Recycling in Argyll and Bute). Kerry MacKay from the trust’s Beaches and Marine Litter Project, will speak about its work across Argyll on community engagement and education to tackle marine litter. See how you could get involved too.

Open Seas will talk about their case study from Gairloch around seabed

Shane Wasik from Basking Shark Scotland will be talking about its work
studying feeding patterns and movements of basking sharks.

Bookings for the conference and field trip can be made on the Porcupine website http://pmnhs.co.uk/meetings/pmnhs-annual-conference.

The cost for the two days are £80 for Porcupine members, £90 for non-members, with single-day registration also available. Students pay £45 for the two days which also includes Porcupine membership for a year.