Thursday, 10 October 2013

5th Oct, from Elfyn (sorry about the delay in posting here!)

At Strumble Head this morning with Chris Grayell I saw a single Risso's dolphin (a male judging by the height of the dorsal fin) around the Strumble banks area of sea.
We also witnessed a rather gruesome case of seal 'cannibalism'. A grey seal (not sure if it was a bull or a cow) was voraciously biting chunks of flesh from a dead seal. There was lots of blood and a feeding frenzy of gull species, a couple of auks, and a great skua capitalising on this bonanza of seal flesh and blubber. The seal (I christened 'Hanniball!) at one stage got a bit 'snappy' at the birds! 
This is the second time I have witnessed an incident like this at Strumble. On the last occasion (reported on here a couple of years ago) it was a bull seal consuming a dead white-coated grey seal pup.
I mentioned this first incident to seal expert Powell Strong a while ago and he says it's very unusual behaviour (or is it?). I would like to know if he has any comments to make about our observations today.