Thursday, 21 June 2012

Birds' Rock, New Quay
Up for my regular Thursday Dolphin Watch session; overcast but mild and a sea state 1.

 The previous "Watchers" hadn't seen anything of note, but the minute they left, the birds arrived. There were four separate feeding events just a hundred metres or so from the foot of the cliffs. In excess of 200 birds, including 20 - 30 Gannets, gulls, cormorants, guillemots and razor bills were either dip feeding or shallow diving. I could just make out the dark shadow of the bait ball under the water, but couldn't see any actual prey fish. The birds kept dispersing and re-forming as they followed the bait ball around. It wasn't too long before the dolphins appeared from the direction of New Quay but they didn't actually get as far as the feeding, perhaps finding other, larger fish where they were. Five Bottlenose including two young appeared to be foraging. Two of the trip boats appeared, from opposite directions and while they obviously pointed out the dolphins to their passengers, they both did the right thing, slowing down and not approaching.