A survey in June 2018 found 29 species including crabs, barnacles and sea squirts living inside the triangular-shaped structures. They are covered by the sea at high water and can be seen when the tide falls.
Isle of Wight consultancy Artecology designed and installed 6 vertipools in 2017 as part of the ferry company’s £45million investment in a new ship for the Portsmouth route and improved port facilities.
Wightlink’s newly appointed Environmental Officer Nicola Craig joined Bournemouth University marine biologist Dr Alice Hall and Artecology’s Ian Boyd and Claire Hector to view the structures at close range on a short voyage to the harbour wall on a launch from the neighbouring Royal Victoria Yacht Club
Ecologist Ian Boyd says:
“Vertipools are a true Island innovation and it’s marvellous to see them being deployed with such effect right here at home. Artecology is all about creating a built environment more favourable for wildlife and Wightlink is helping to do just that.”
Dr Alice Hall will be monitoring the vertipools twice a year to keep track of the different species that inhabit them. She says:
“The vertipools at Fishbourne have colonised very well and are supporting a wide range of species which would otherwise be absent from the concrete structure. They are also providing a refuge for animals such as crabs and sea spiders when the tides falls. I look forward to monitoring them further to see how they change and develop over time.”