Monday, 30 June 2014

Skomer Risso's

We had stunning views of three Risso's Dolphins very close to the Mew Stone of Skomer yesterday afternoon, as around 1500. They are the first I have ever seen, but seemed to be one adult (male?) and two immatures; I am note sure how to sex or better age these. We watched them for perhaps 20 minutes (other visitors had seen them even earlier), and they seemed to feed in a relatively small area, the adult sometimes coming out of the water very energetically; at other times we easily could see it (him?) under water as a very pale shape. The two immatures stayed close together, but most often separate from the adult.

I was lucky enough to be standing next to Mike Jones, of Wildoutwalking (, who took some excellent photos, and sent them to me to share on this blog: thank you Mike!

The bad news is that these wonderful creatures were put down by three divers in a RIB, who had been diving just to the east of the Mew Stone close inshore. They started the boat up and drove fast at the adult, then circled over where it had dived before doing an number of tight circles at some speed (and noise) close by. This was a clear breach of the Pembrokeshire Marine Code, in my judgement, and gives divers and RIBs a very bad name, As a RIB co-owner myself, if we want to end up being banned from sensitive but beautiful areas like the Skomer MNR, or around Ramsey, this is exactly the behaviour that will achieve this.

So, whoever has a 5.5m white-hulled RIB with orange tubes and black rubbing strips, and had 3 divers on board yesterday afternoon, thanks for nothing!