Sep10

Long finned pilot whales and much more

Categories // North Sea Wildlife Officer

Long finned pilot whales and much more

As the seasons change and Ingrid's time on board draws to a close check out the latest sightings from the North Sea! 

The light fading earlier in the evening and colder morning deck watches are evidence of the changing seasons on board the DFDS KING Seaways. However, this has not put a damper on our enthusiasm and we have been rewarded with many wonderful sightings. It was Helen’s last week on board and she was very happy to have spotted 2 long finned pilot whales fairly close to the ship on Monday morning.

As our placement program has come to an end, I was the only Wildlife Officer on board when we set sail Wednesday evening, but I was not alone. I was joined by several keen passengers with very good spotting abilities. Initially we saw a big group of resting birds on the surface and then the shouts came. We had many small groups of dolphins and porpoises. I suspect we were sailing through the tail end of a feeding frenzy. It wasn’t long before we saw the first dark body with small dorsal fin. In total we spotted 8 minke whales passing by with several grey seals poking their heads out the water as well.

For the latter part of the week we have had some challenging spotting conditions with many white caps and increased swell that particularly disguises the smaller animals, yet we still spotted a minke whale in these conditions.

By Sunday morning the swell had dropped and we could see much better. The sightings I had were quite far off, so all you could spot were splashes as dolphins swam along. That is until a passenger spotted quite a big fin, a group of white-beaked dolphins. They did not dash off; as the ship approached they held their position and we saw them clearly as they passed to the port side of the ship.

This coming week is my last on board the KING Seaways, so check back again next Monday to find out what farewell the North Sea had planned for me!

Ingrid

Wildlife Officer North Sea