3/11/2017: Bottlenose dolphins and Atlantic grey seals

2hr survey. Start time 09:00

Weather conditions: Fair, sea state 1, wind direction NW/SE/S

A total of twelve bottlenose dolphin individuals were spotted during this survey, seven of which were in the bay from the start of the survey, with two groups including one juvenile in each, moving between the headland and near the reef. These groups were soon joined by another group of five dolphins including one juvenile. These groups of bottlenose dolphins moved in and out of the survey area for the remainder of the survey and at the end of the two-hours there remained two groups of up to eleven individuals including three juveniles both milling close to the surface close to the cardinal marker.

 

2hr survey. Start time 11:00

Weather conditions: Overcast, sea state 1, wind direction S

Of the groups in the bay from the previous survey, three groups remained for the start of this one; in total consisting of eight individuals, split between the cardinal marker, headland and close to the wall. After 11:30 the dolphins started the travel away from the survey area, leaving only two dolphins in the bay, approximately 200 metres North of the harbour wall. By 12:00 this group had too moved out of the bay and there were no further sightings until 12:45 when three dolphins were spotted foraging between the harbour wall and fish factory.

 

2hr survey. Start time 13:00

Weather conditions: Fair, sea state 1, wind direction SW/S

Five dolphins were in the bay at the start of this survey, with two groups foraging close to the headland, within the next half-hour these groups split and moved slowly to cardinal marker before foraging and leaving the survey area at 13:45. A male Atlantic Grey seal was then spotted swimming near the harbour wall; from 14:15 a group of three dolphins joined the seal in the bay close to the cardinal marker, this group then preceded to move West across the bay and by the end of the survey six dolphins including one juvenile were sighted in the survey area, in two groups foraging and leaping close to the fish factory.

 

2hr survey. Start time 15:00

Weather conditions: Fair/rain, sea state 0-1, wind direction SE/S

The previous dolphin groups had moved out of the survey area by the 15:00, therefore the first marine mammal sighting of this survey was a female Grey seal, which was spotted swimming close to the harbour wall before logging just off Dolau beach. By 15:45 the seal had moved away and three dolphins were spotted travelling East to West across the bay toward the headland, at 16:00 they were joined there by the seal spotted earlier, before the dolphins moved away leaving the seal behind for the last fifteen minutes of the survey.