Tuesday, 7 December 2010

More winter Porps with calves from Steve...

Hi Rich

A porpoise and calf were in the centre of Rest Bay, Porthcawl, this morning about 1/2 mile out. They appeared to be feeding rather than travelling and there is a lot of whiting and cod in that area at the moment. I stopped the boat to observe but while they appeared unconcerned at me travelling they were not happy with me stationery and disappeared from view.


.... I spoke to Steve later on the phone and he had some interesting thoughts on Porpoise off Porthcawl. His late grandmother and older members of the community felt had a saying about Porpoise bringing hot weather and the arrival of Mackerel! not much of either about in the Bristol Channel this week I would bet! Basically they were thought of as a summer species and were seen in pods of 40-50 at least thats Steve's memory. The problem is all small dolphin species tended to be called porpoises, its just possible that what they were seeing were Common Dolphins and as Steve happily admits its a long time ago and he wouldn't want to swear on it...

The thing is when he starts going down mememory lane, it getes even more interesting.

"We used to have mackerel for about 6 weeks in June/July but then the sharks would break up the shoals..."
"Porbeagles - 80lb plus, then the longliners caught them all off Lundy, or so they said..."
"Hardly any Mackerel now , or Sharks but plenty of Whiting and Cod..."

Really interesting stuff, local knowledge amassed over half a century and likely to be lost like the Mackerel unless we get it all written down. Would love to hear any other stuff! allthingsgood, cliff.