21/08/2013 – Bottlenose dolphins and atlantic grey seals

2 hour survey, start time 9.00
Weather conditions: overcast/dull, sea state 1-3, wind direction S/SE
Five bottlenose dolphins, including 1 calf

An adult and calf pair were seen foraging at the harbour entrance and one slightly further out towards the cardinal buoy. Two more were seen traveling in a North West direction out of the harbour area, spending a lot of time at the surface. The travelling dolphins were then joined by the mother and calf and they all travelled towards the fish factory and began foraging, leaving just one lone adult continuing to forage close to the wall. The dolphins then travelled back south east, spending more time diving and searching for food before settling once more to forage in front of our volunteers on the wall. The group of four bottlenose dolphins began leaping slightly offshore from the harbour wall and the calf was amongst them, whilst the one dolphin remained a lot closer continuing to feed, at one point allowing us to see the fish being chased. Towards the end of the survey the dolphins had returned to more gentle foraging behaviour and started to disperse in to individuals positioned over a wider portion of the survey area.

2 hour survey, start time 11.00
Weather conditions: overcast/dull, sea state 1-2, wind direction S/SW/W
Five bottlenose dolphins

Four bottlenose dolphins were present at the beginning of the survey, spread over a large area, three foraging individually and one further offshore enjoying leaping and lunging where one of the foraging dolphins later decided to join in. The two then enjoyed a moment of milling on the surface and socialising, whilst the other two dolphins joined forces to continue foraging together. One of the foraging dolphins was then lured into join the milling and socialising with the two dolphins, leaving just one foraging their way out towards the cardinal buoy. The survey continued and the dolphins switched between foraging, traveling and milling behaviours throughout.

2 hour survey, start time 13.00
Weather conditions: fair/rain, sea state 2, wind direction W/SW
Three bottlenose dolphins and 1 Atlantic grey seal

Three bottlenose dolphins were present for the entirety of this leg of the survey feeding, interlacing foraging behaviour of deep diving with more acrobatic leaping and lunging at the surface. An Atlantic grey seal was also seen bottling in the water close to the harbour wall.

2 hour survey, start time 15.00
Weather conditions: overcast/dull/rain, sea state 1, wind direction S
Six bottlenose dolphins, including one calf

Six bottlenose dolphins were foraging near to the fish factory and then moved across the bay towards the cardinal buoy, two held back foraging in the centre of the bay whilst three, one became apparent as a calf, continued travelling to the cardinal buoy, then worked back on themselves spending time deep diving whilst travelling back to the west. The last sightings of the group were of them travelling and deep diving offshore and westerly.