Monday, 29 June 2009

And more from the Dolphin Coast!

From Andy Bowen
I would like to record a sighting of dolphins off the coast of pembrokeshire on Saturday 27th June 09.
I own a 22 Channel islands cruiser called Osprey and on Saturday went out to try and spot some dolphins.
The intention was to make a passage out to Grassholm and back,however approx
2 miles due west of St Annes at approx 11a.m I came across a pod of approx 70-100 common dolphin.These dolphin stayed and played around the boat for about 90 mins.It was interesting that when they first approached the boat I was cruising at around 6 knts they did not appear very intersested as I was not producing a sufficiently large bow wave. When I increased speed to about
8-9 knts and my bow wave and stern wave increased they returned and played around the boat for some time.There were several young calves spotted and both mothers and calves were broaching clean out of the water.At one point a group of about 6 harbour porpoise came close and the dolphins went straight for them and chased them off. After this incident the dolphins returned to play around the boat.One of our other boats Blue Shark was about 2 mile east when this show was going on carrying a a party of divers.The skipper made his way over to me and the dolphins also played around the boat riding the bow wave.
Eventually all the dolphins headed NW with the tide towards Skokholm.
I have the exact lat and long on my gps if you are interested.
By the way I am a W.I.S.E.
accredited skipper
Nice one Andy, and the fact you have made the effort to take a course about acting responsibly around marine wildlife is cool. We always support the Pembrokeshire Marine Code (see link oppopsite) which was put together by local conservationists and boat operators to help protect our marine wildlife.
I should point out that to deliberately chase or harrass dolphins and seals as well as basking sharks etc is a criminal offence. If you come across dolphins don't chase them, if they come to you, just keep on a steady course, enjoy them, but let them leave when they want to, allthingsgood, cliff