We ran a number of successful trips from Neyland in 2013 although windy conditions in the "summer" caused a number of trips to be cancelled. The one on 11 July was a great success with 260+ Common Dolphins, 14 Harbour Porpoises and...........4 Minke Whales! On Bank Holiday Monday 26 August a trip to the outer reaches of the Bristol Channel was wonderful with many hundred Common Dolphins including many small calfs and the rare sighting of a Thresher Shark.
Wildlife Observer Wales (WOW) Courses
Pembrokeshire College in partnership with Sea Trust will run a number of courses through the summer on Cetaceans, Seals, Marine Life and Seabirds. Click here for details.
Sea Trust "Stena Europe" Cetacean Surveys
We have continued to run our cetacean surveys aboard the Stena Europe throughout 2013, whenever weather permits. This year our annual Dolphin-othon ran from the 31st of August to the 7th of September and was a great success. We had 13 volunteer monitors take part, as well as 6 separate teams of eager watchers; over 40 keen dolphin spotters in total!
Conditions weren’t ideal over the week, but we still managed to spot plenty of cetaceans. Here are the figures:
Harbour porpoise - 27 sightings, 56 individuals
Risso's dolphin - 9 sightings, 37+ individuals
Common dolphin - 12 sightings, 299+ individuals
Unidentified dolphin species - 3 sightings, 24 individuals
Unidentified - 2 sightings, ? individuals
Total - 53 sightings, 417+ animals
Click Here for our Facebook page for pictures from the week.
For more information about recent sightings from our surveys, and a full report of this year’s Dolphin-othon click Here to visit our Whales in Wales blog.
Apart from all this effort the crew often take records for us, particularly bridge crew; Boatswain, Alan Murrow and Quartermaster, Charlie Morley. Charlie saw his first ever whale after forty years at sea in October 2010! a highlight for him and another valuable record for us! Alan often spots something before we do! But it’s all the Stena people who over the years have become friends and have supported us, that make our work on the good old “Stena Europe” such a pleasure even on those cold dark winter days.