Friday, 3 September 2010

Final Day!

Day seven blustery out from Tusker sea state 4-5 heavy glare, not really worth an effort survey, we started looking at the stat's

By the end of day six we had seen a total of 513 animals including:

  1. Five species
  2. 65 porpoises
  3. 363 common dolphins
  4. 68 Risso's dolphins
  5. 1 fin whale
  6. 1 minke whale
  7. and 14 unidentified animals including a whale sp.

One "off effort" sighting of 10 common dolphins was collected as we came into Strumble this morning by Verena and Rhi' so that brought the tally to 373 Commons.

One new species was a submarine, I had never seen one before, cruising along on the surface at 14 knots, obviously not in a rush! The night watch had spotted a similar target on the radar off Strumble at around 11.30pm, the senior service have obviously been busy in the area with Hms Echo still about, and HMS Quorn refuelling at Fishguard when we berthed. I took the chance to deliver some of our Stena Sea Trust Wildlife Guides of the Irish Sea, and one of our Whales in Whales blog cards.

After grabbing a quick lunch we met up with Sarah's team and were soon embarking on our last survey of the Dolphin-othon!

Sadly Sarah had a full on case of Sea Sickness although the sea state was only one but a quite big swell had developed. So the Dolphin-othon sort of did end with a whimper although we addded four more Risso's one spotted by Sarahs Mum and Sarah as she hung on for grim death on the side rail! We also added 3 more porpoise and another 30 commons so the totals were:

  1. 5 species
  2. 570 animals
  3. 403 Commons
  4. 72 Risso's
  5. 68 Porpoises
  6. 1 Fin whale
  7. 1 Minke Whale
  8. 14 unidentified including 1 whale sp.
  9. Average of 2.33 sightings per hour
  10. Average of 14.8 cetaceans seen per hour

Forty five volunteers and monitors took part and we also had massive help and service from Stena Line, John the Taxi, and the staff at the Harbour View Hotel, Rosslare. Thanks to all the team leaders and monitors and most of all those incredible birds and cetaceans that made it all such a gas!