Friday, 7 April 2017

Super Ferry Animals! What a trip!

For once the weather forecast was right with flat calm seas as Laura, Rens and I set off aboard the Stena Europe on one of our monthly surveys. combined with an overcast sky with no glare conditions were as perfect as we could have hoped for, if a little chilly. Porpoises started things off and continued until about a third into the trip when a single Common Dolphin showed up looking lost and disorientated, I fear the rest of its pod may well have died in fishing nets as a single common dolphin is rarer than a super-pod. On we went and into the Risso's Triangle but no Risso's this trip just more porp's and then Laura got onto something that turned into a rather fine Minke Whale! We had not had much success in getting pic's but both Rens and I got more or less identical shots.
We were hoping that the resident Bottlenose would put in an appearance. Laura scored again spotting it just off the harbour the none of us got decent shots of that!
A great breakfast in the Truckers Bar set us up and I arrived on the bridge to see the res dolphin off the harbour wall. Rens and Laura joined me and I got a couple of pic's at anchor and as we set off the dolphin swam in to briefly join us! Then began a bit of a porp-fest for the next hour. with another sad pair of commons to add variety. I was struggling to get everything down on the recording forms and then we had an hour of famine after the feas on the middle hour!
The last third of the trip started slowly but as we came in towards Strumble, the porpoises were coming in thick and fast and I was really struggling to get them down. By the end of the trip we had a record breaking 63 sightings including four species!
We really were welcomed by all the crew and captains Rush and Gerry who lent me the captains seat as I was suffering from tendinitis and could not stand! What a great bunch of people both on board and onshore, thanks again for a record breaking trip!

Rens and Laura.

Porpoises galore!
Minke Whale Rens

Minke (cb)