Survey Reports

2019-05-26 - Oban–Tiree–Coll–Oban–Colonsay-Oban

Survey details

Survey route: Oban–Tiree–Coll–Oban–Colonsay-Oban

Company: Caledonian MacBrayne

Sea region: Minches & Western Scotland

Survey start date: 2019-05-26

Number of nights: Day sailing

^ Common seals seen on return journey

With sightings of a fin whale breaching off Tiree seen in recent days, the ORCA survey team were eager for the day ahead as they boarded the MV Clansman at 7am. The weather wasn’t on our side though, averaging around sea state 4 most of the day, rain, low cloud and occasional fog banks. The team braved the conditions on the back verandah for 2 hours as we travelled up the sound of Mull. Once clearing the island of Mull the fog lifted and we were allowed onto the bridge, briefly, as a technical issue occured. We limped back to Oban on one engine which took 4 hours. As we bobbed around offshore initially we did manage to see 2 probable common dolphins feeding amongst a large flock of manx shearwaters. We had 8 common seals on a small rocky island on our return journey.


The ORCA team were magnificent and cheerful.The Calmac kind ferry team had amazing patience, These things happen.


Marine Mammals seen:


Common Dolphin(probable)  x2, Common seal x8


Birds seen:


Black throated diver, manx shearwater c700, razorbill, guillemot, puffin, black guillemot, shag, red breasted merganser, eider, kittiwake, common gull, gtr black backed gull, herring gull, oystercatcher and gannet.

^ Manx Shearwaters

^ MV Clansman

Survey team members

Brian Clasper,Charlotte Andrew,Beth Harvey & Sarah Harvey