Getting closer to Selsey’s Marine Inhabitants
Anya Frampton of Mulberry Divers tells us how to discover another world residing in Selsey.
I have been part of Mulberry Divers for over 13 years and love being around the water. As a snorkeling/Freediving and Scuba Instructor there is only one thing better than spending time with our marine residents and that is introducing them to other people. I often hear the words “what can you see?” or “is there anything there?” and my answer is “Yes! There is plenty to see and lots of ways you can get closer to experience it for yourself”.
The biodiversity of our marine residents and the ecosystem they live in has been recognised with the granting of Selsey Bill and Hounds Marine Conservation Zone, but perhaps you have wondered how you might see this amazing life!
Easily accessible on a walk are active ecosystems where battles rage for the best spots. On a walk you will meet the regular residents including anemones, mussels, whelks and crabs. Think of these as Selsey’s answer to rock pooling. If you are not sure where to look, you can join us on a guided walk. We show you where to look and tell you about their life including how they see off unwanted competition, their favourite foods and daily life. More fun if you come prepared to wade a little but you still plenty to see if you choose to stay dry.
If you venture into the water then snorkeling opens a door into another world. I have been lucky enough to see wrasse, juvenile eels, four species of crab, fan worms, mackerel, bass, blennies, gobies, prawns and even a sunbathing greater pipefish. Pipefish belong to the same family as sea horses and share the facial characteristics or snout. On a sunny evening with falling tide you can see them snuggling on the bottom catching the last of the sun’s rays. You do need to be aware of tides but we have guided tours throughout the summer to get you started. If a confident snorkeler you can always calland check details with us.
The qualified diver has an opportunity to get up close and personal with some of the shyer residents or to see those who prefer a little deeper water. My diving experiences have let me watch the wrasse build nests, spot numerous species of nudibranch, observe resting catsharks, drift over rays, see a lobster catch his tea and eat it, pass mating sea hares and interact with curious blennies.
What is next for me? Selsey is seasonal and you are never sure what you will find on any given day. It is always a privilege, never boring and I might get to see a Selsey Seahorse one day!
Whether you want to walk, snorkel or dive at Mulberry Divers we would be delighted to introduce you to Selsey’s Marine Inhabitants contact us on 01243 601000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.