24/10/2017: Bottlenose dolphins and Atlantic grey seals

2hr survey. Start time 09:00
Weather conditions: overcast/rain, sea state 3/2, wind direction SE/SW

Dolphins were seen throughout this survey, a total of 8 bottlenose dolphins with 2 calves. A group of three dolphins were observed travelling east to meet another single dolphin at the cardinal marker. Then an extended group of five was seen with two calves foraging close to the cardinal marker, then were seen travelling west thought to be herding fish back into shallower waters. Two new dolphins came into the bay to forage, joining the current pod in the bay. An Atlantic grey seal was spotted to the west of the harbour wall, close to the stones and rock pool habitat.

 

2hr survey. Start time 11:00
Weather conditions: overcast, sea state 1, wind direction SW

Bottlenose dolphins were seen throughout this window of surveying, seven dolphins were seen foraging by the marker taking long dives. Also an Atlantic grey seal was spotted during the first 15 minutes of the survey, swimming by the rocks to the west of the harbour wall. The group of dolphins were then seen swimming by the harbour wall, more frequently surfacing than by the reef. Another Atlantic grey seal was spotted during the second half of the survey closer to the harbour wall, nearer the beach. A mother and calf were seen foraging to the east of the harbour wall, not far from the cardinal marker.

 

2hr survey. Start time 13:00
Weather conditions: overcast/rain, sea state 3/2, wind direction SW

All throughout this survey we had seen dolphins swimming and foraging in New Quay Bay, a total of seven dolphins and two calves and one Atlantic grey seal were spotted. The group of dolphins were the same individuals from the previous survey, which continued to forage in the bay. A split group of three including a mother and calf were seen swimming close to the harbour wall, allowing visitors to get a close encounter, while the other individuals in the pod were still foraging by the cardinal marker. A female Atlantic grey seal was spotted diving to the east of the harbour wall towards the end of the survey, and then was seen closer to the harbour wall at the end point bottling its head out of the water.

 

2hr survey. Start time 15:00
Weather conditions: overcast/mist visibility < 2 km, sea state 2, wind direction S/SW

The visibility was thought to pose a threat to sightings during the final survey however, bottlenose dolphins were still seen throughout the survey. A total of three bottlenose dolphins were seen swimming together directly in front of the harbour wall then travelled across to the cardinal marker and back again in front of the harbour wall to forage at shallow waters. Two Atlantic grey seals were also spotted for the first hour of the survey a female was spotted bottling its head out of the water. Then a second different female seal was seen during the final 15 minutes of the survey.