Thursday, 13 August 2009

Fabulous Finwhale Fandango!

There are people who are reticent, reserved and apt to understatement and on this occasion I believe any of these might apply to the above description of the experience our Sea Trust volunteers and supporters enjoyed this afternoon. Our first intention was to survey our Bristol Channel Box but though conditions were favourable the Castlemartin firing range was in action putting the mockers on that.

We then decided to go out looking for whales and after last weeks tantalising glimpses we were on a bit of a mission. It took a long time and strenuous searching to even find dolphins given the relatively calm conditions but as usual the happy hunting grounds eventually turned up the goods and having got those under our belt we headed in the general direction of the place we saw them a week ago.

Whilst watching dolphins, Enid spotted something odd and the description was right for a whale although she was not entirely sure. A shark fishing boat (thanks Paul and Phil) , confirmed there were Fin Whales in the vicinity and set us in the right direction . Soon after I spotted towering blows and then everyone else saw them but mostly whilst looking in opposite directions.

We will never know how many we saw but somwhere between ten and twenty would be my guess. Not only did we see them but we got close up and personal with one animal lunge feeding next to the boat amid a frenzy of shearwaters and common dolphins, At one point it was seen diving below the Celtic Wildcat, much to skipper Nicks amusement. it went on and on before we reluctantly broke away. Hopefully there are some nice pictures to come, over to you Rich...