FMD in Aberdeen

Aberdeen had a very good Fish Migration day on May 14th 2011. We were located in two places to conduct the event:

a) Union Square Shopping Mall in Aberdeen City Centre

b) Torry Battery - overlooking the River Dee and Aberdeen Harbour

At Union Square we displayed LNS banners, handed out FMD and LNS leaflets and bags with LNS goodies, and displayed a video, and the LNS website. We also tried the EEL game! Everything we did had a fish theme, even the sweets, and all our freebies had a Living North Sea logo and website address on them. We also hired a face painter - who painted children with different fish faces - and managed a SKYPE link between the two Aberdeen locations. Naturally we attracted a lot of people at this stand - including four Norwegian tourists! - Which was at the main entrance to Aberdeen's largest and most recent shopping mall.

At Torry Battery, the slightly disappointing weather did not attract quite so many people as we had hoped to attend our FMD marquee. This was despite the presence of Dolphins, Porpoises and a Minke Whale ALL day at the mouth of the River Dee chasing salmon! However, we managed a few more visitors in the late afternoon when the weather picked up and the sun was shining - well - in-between the heavy rain! Nevertheless, we got some children colouring pictures and playing a fish game, had a SKYPE connection with Sweden, a group of people canoeing on the River Dee - looking for Salmon - and the presence of a fish migration scientist from Marine Scotland, and scientists from the River Don Trust - who have all expressed a desire to join our network and to collaborate on some future educational fish migration activities. We even got two elderly Dutch tourists in a camper van late in the afternoon who believe it or not lived 13km from Groningen! Unfortunately, they thought our marquee was a campsite!

Overall it was a good day - especially considering the many other activities taking place in Aberdeen at the same time as the FMD. Had the oppurtunity to click loads of photographs, some good press releases, and have an article on the FMD/LNS coming out in a Scottish magazine - The Leopard! Prior to our FMD we also placed an article in the UoA College Newsletter.

Thanks go to everyone involved, especially Shirisha Karnam and Lukasz Langowski for all their hard work helping me to prepare for the day - and our volunteer student helpers Rihards Johansons (from Latvia), Helena Mackay (from Scotland), and Heidi Korkeamaki (from Finland) who all willingly agreed to come along for the day and take part in the event.

As a rapid follow up to the FMD, we planned a second event and had a stand at the UoA in the Hub - the main UoA student and staff facility - to raise awareness on campus, where we gave out more information, and some of the leaflets.