11/09/2015: 48 bottlenose dolphins, 3 harbour porpoises and 87 Atlantic grey seals

11/09/2015: 48 bottlenose dolphins, 3 harbour porpoises and 87 Atlantic grey seals

8hr survey. Start time: 09:40
Weather conditions: sea state 1-3, visibility >10km, light swell
Forty-three bottlenose dolphins, three harbour porpoises, eighty-seven Atlantic grey seals

Shortly after the survey began, the first sighting of two Atlantic grey seals, a female and a pup hauled out, was made. Over the next hour an additional eight adult Atlantic grey seals were sighted in the water, and three pups were seen hauled out. About an hour and a half into the survey, a pair of harbour porpoises, including a juvenile, was sighted travelling in a south-easterly direction, and lone harbour porpoise was seen travelling in a southerly direction. This was shortly followed by a sighting of a group of twelve leaping bottlenose dolphins, which included at least three calves. The group travelled and bow-rode the boat over the next half an hour, before heading off. About an hour after this sighting, another group of about ten bottlenose dolphins, including two calves, were seen. The group travelled in a south-easterly direction with the boat, choosing to bow-ride and leap in close proximity for roughly half an hour. Gannets were also observed circling the group. About an hour later, and over a period of about half an hour, a further eight Atlantic grey seals were sighted both hauled out and in the water, including a hauled out pup. This was shortly followed by a sighting of eight Atlantic grey seals in the water, and a little further on, another twenty-five in the water and seventeen hauled out on a beach. About half an hour later, roughly six hours into the survey, another group of about thirteen bottlenose dolphins were sighted, including two calves and two new-borns. The group travelled with and bow-rode the boat in an easterly direction, and were also observed leaping. Shortly after, a lone Atlantic grey seal was sighted. In the final half an hour of the survey, two groups of bottlenose dolphins travelling in various directions were sighted. The first, a group of five including a calf, were observed foraging near New Quay headland. The second, a group of three including a calf, were also observed foraging nearer the headland. The boat then rounded the headland into New Quay bay, leaving the dolphins out of sight.

1.5hr survey. Start time 12:52
Weather conditions: sea state 1-3, visibility >10km, light swell
Eight Atlantic grey seals

At the beginning of the survey, an Atlantic grey seal pup was spotted hauled out. About half an hour later, a lone female Atlantic grey seal was seen in the water. Over the next forty minutes, four more Atlantic grey seal individuals were spotted. One lone individual was hauled out and three lone male individuals were seen in the water. Near the end of the survey, two more Atlantic grey seals, a mother and a suckling pup, were sighted hauled out.

2hr survey. Start time 14:45
Weather conditions: sea state 1-2, visibility >10km, light swell
Five bottlenose dolphins, five Atlantic grey seals

Nearly an hour into the survey, a lone female Atlantic grey seal and another lone seal of undetermined sex were seen in the water. Shortly after, three more Atlantic grey seals were seen hauled out, consisting of a male, a female and a pup. At the end of the survey, a group of five bottlenose dolphins, including a juvenile, were observed foraging.