Friday, 25 April 2014

First Holyhead - Dublin survey of the year

On Wednesday we headed up to Holyhead and completed our first Northern route survey of the year aboard the Stena Nordica. Despite conditions that weren't ideal we had sightings of porpoise the whole way across on both legs. Usually single animals or in pairs we had some lovely sightings of them right under the wave tops - 12 in total. As well as the porpoise, the bird life really stood out - hundreds of Manx shearwaters passing through - possibly Bardsey birds, or maybe even headed for the Isle of Man? We also saw auks in large numbers - guillemots, razorbills and a puffin or two. Gannets, kittiwakes, fulmar, red spot gulls, shagarants and a few tern made up the numbers, before counting at least 27 black guillemots in Dublin harbour - great news after the battering they've had this winter! We are going to be conducting these surveys aboard the Stena Nordica from Holyhead - Dublin monthly, anyone interested in taking part please email for more info.

A massive thank you to the crew aboard the ship and the team on shore for all their help and their kind hospitality - it's very much appreciated and we look forward to the next one!

Elfyn, Dave and  new recruit Katy hard at work

Katy, Hannah and Dave keep watch as we approach Holyhead on the return