Shark Name: Colm doesn't Cille
School: Scoil Cholmcille, Glengad
Teacher: Mary Harkin
4m shark with distinctive vertical white scaring lines on the port side of the Dorsal fin.
This shark was tagged in the early morning calm South of Lenan head, well within the mouth of Lough Swilly. A small juvenile shark with few distinguishing marks. It did not surface again once tagged. This shark will prove an excellent example for the juvenile bracket of the species.
‘Colm Doesn’t Cille’ is a reminder of Colmcille a famous Donegal monk who brought Christianity to Scotland. Like recent harmless visually tagged basking sharks he travelled north from Inishowen’s shores to the western isles of Scotland. It is a most suitable name for the Glengad shark because on clear days Islay, Colonsay and the Paps of Jura are visible from the windows and front doors of this coastal community, including the local community school.
Glengad parish is one of the most remote rural communities on the Irish Atlantic edge. It lies at the base of a steep sided valley and has traditionally been linked with other regions by sea. A close knit island community in all senses but the twisting access roads, it is sheltered by steep hills from the mainland. VHF signal is often better here than Mobile phone reception. There is a strong maritime heritage with many islanders from near-by Inishtrahull settling here when the island was abandoned during the turn of the century. Fishing remains the stable way of life within the community with crabbing and lobster potting dominant. Basking sharks have been a feature of summer life here for as long as people can remember, stories of youth’s spent unwinding sharks from Salmon nets in the 1950’s are often told in the local Fishermans Inn.