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Corporate CalMac

18th September 2019

Survey Report for Uig-Tarbert/Lochmaddy

There had been sightings of huge pods of dolphins from MV Hebrides the day before by the ORCA Wildlife Officer and today's team leader so anticipation was high as we boarded the ship.  Unfortunately, the weather conditions were very different and thick fog had shrouded the ocean since early morning but was just lifting as we were welcomed onto the bridge.  Sea state was 3-4 for most of the morning.  We had one incidental recording of a minke whale as we passed the Trotternish Peninsula.

The afternoon sailing to Tarbert and back gave us a slightly better sea state but with varying degrees of visibility due to fog banks.  We did, however pick up a nice group of 26 common dolphins which showed very well in front of the ship, much to the delight of the team, especially those new to surveying.  But the numbers of dolphins in the middle of the Minch were small in comparison the previous day. It just goes to show how sightings can vary massively from day to day.

This was a difficult but in the end, rewarding survey for the team and we left the ship at 6pm happy with the work that we had done.

Many thanks to CalMac and their crews for allowing us on board.

Marine Mammals Seen:

  • Harbour porpoise - 3
  • Common dolphin - 28
  • Minke whale - 1

Birds Seen:

  • Birds
  • Gannet
  • Guillemot
  • Arctic skua
  • Black headed gull
  • Herring gull
  • Cormorant
  • Shag
  • Carrion crow
  • Kittiwake
  • Great northern diver
  • Great black backed gull
  • Great skua
  • European storm petrel
  • Manx shearwater

Survey Team Members:

Andy Gilbert, Jane Garret, Kevin Garret, Martin Kinnear.

List for 18th September 2019

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