Fish News

Message In Bottle Found 98 Years Later

Fisherman finds message in a bottle at sea for 98 YEARS and is now eligible  for the reward – a sixpence

  • Scottish skipper Andrew Leaper discovered  drift bottle on same boat which recorded previous record-breaking bottle in  2006
  • Bottle was thrown in to see by Captain CH  Brown of Glasgow School of Navigation in 1914
  • Drift bottles gave oceanographers important  information about water circulation in seas around  Scotland

By Amy Oliver

PUBLISHED:11:31 EST, 30  August 2012| UPDATED:19:47 EST, 30 August 2012

What a find: Scottish skipper Andrew Leaper caught the glass bottle, one of 1,890 designed to sink downwards and float close to the seabed in an attempt to monitor the under-currents of the seas around Scotland, in one of his fishing netsWhat a find: Scottish skipper Andrew Leaper caught the  glass bottle, one of 1,890 designed to sink downwards and float close to the  seabed in an attempt to monitor the under-currents of the seas around Scotland,  in one of his fishing nets

It’s doubtful whether he’ll get the sixpence  finders fee offered in 1914.

But Scottish skipper Andrew Leaper will  probably settle for the glory – and a new world record – after discovering a  message in a bottle 98 YEARS after it was thrown into the ocean.

Me Leaper came across the bottle by chance  while hauling in his nets, but almost lost it after it fell back into the sea  before  he rescued it.

He then noticed it contained a message asking the finder to record the date and  location  of the discovery and return the item to the Director of the Fishery  Board  for Scotland – for a reward of sixpence.

The crew learned the bottle – labelled as  drift bottle 646B – had been thrown into the sea almost a century ago by  Captain CH Brown of the Glasgow School of Navigation.

It was one of 1,890 bottles designed to sink  downwards and float close to the seabed in an attempt to monitor the  under-currents of the seas around Scotland.

To date, only 315 of the bottles  have ever  been located, but Captain’s Brown’s original log, now held in Aberdeen by Marine  Science Scotland, is still updated every time one is tracked down.

Incredibly, the discovery was made on Copius, the same Shetland-based fishing boat which recorded the previous world  record for  the longest time a drift bottle has been known to spend at  sea, in  2006.

Mr Leaper, 43, joked that his friend and  colleague Mark Anderson, who set the previous record in  was ‘very  unhappy’ his find had been surpassed.

 

He said: ‘He never stopped talking about it  and now I am the one who is immensely proud to be the finder  of the world  record message in a bottle.

‘As we hauled in the nets I spotted the  bottle neck sticking out and I  quickly grabbed it before it fell back in the  sea. I couldn’t wait to  open it.

‘It was an amazing  coincidence that the same  Shetland fishing boat that found the previous  record-breaking bottle six years  ago also found this one.

‘It’s like winning the lottery twice. This is  a very popular fishing ground, with half the North Sea fleet fishing  here.’

Scottish environment secretary Richard  Lochhead added that it was possible  another of the bottles released in 1914  could go on to break the record  again.

He said: ‘The story  of scientific drift  bottles is a fascinating one and harks back to an  area when we were only  beginning to understand the complexities of the  seas.

Return to sender: The message inside the bottle asked the finder to record the date and location of the discovery and return the item to the Director of the Fishery Board for Scotland - for a reward of sixpenceReturn to sender: The message inside the bottle asked  the finder to record the date and location of the discovery and return the item  to the Director of the Fishery Board for Scotland – for a reward of sixpence

 

Coincidence: Incredibly, Mr Leaper made the discovery on Copius, the same Shetland-based fishing boat which recorded the previous world record for the longest time a drift bottle has been known to spend at sea, in 2006Coincidence: Incredibly, Mr Leaper made the discovery on  Copius, the same Shetland-based fishing boat which recorded the previous world  record for the longest time a drift bottle has been known to spend at sea, in  2006

‘It’s amazing that nearly 98 years on bottles  are still being returned to the Marine Laboratory and in such fantastic  condition.

‘With many bottles still un-returned there is  always the chance in the coming years that a Scottish drift bottle will once  again break the record.’

Dr Bill Turrell, Head of Marine Ecosystems  with Marine Scotland Science, said: ‘Drift bottles gave oceanographers at the  start of the last century important information that allowed them to create  pictures of the patterns of water circulation in the seas around Scotland.

New world record: Mr Leaper said scoring two world records for the longest time a drift bottle has been known to spend at sea was 'like winning the lottery twice'New world record: Mr Leaper said scoring two world  records for the longest time a drift bottle has been known to spend at sea was  ‘like winning the lottery twice’

‘These images were used to underpin further  research, such as determining the drift of herring larvae from spawning grounds,  which helped scientists understand the life cycle of this key  species.

‘The conclusions of these pioneering  oceanographers were right in many respects, for example, they correctly deduced  the clockwise flow of water around our coasts.

‘However, it took the development of  electronic instruments in the 1960s before the true patterns of current flows,  and more importantly what causes them, were unlocked.’

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2195841/Fisherman-finds-message-bottle-sea-98-YEARS-eligible-reward–sixpence.html#ixzz258dPE4F7

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