Monday, 25 May 2015

Celtic Deep in the mist

A belated report from Friday: we took a party from the Oxford Navigation Group out from Skomer to release nine heavily- instrumented Manx Shearwaters, as part of the project to understand how these birds find their way around when out of sight of land. We ended up nearly 30 miles south west of Skomer although, given the persistent mist and cloud, we only knew this from the GPS: we could have been anywhere!
We had several big groups of Manxies on the way out, and more evenly scattered in the evening. Plenty of auks closer in to the land, and several roving groups of Gannets came to inspect us.Higlights were two Storm Petrels and another far large petrel, with much longer, thin wings. In the swell and wind it was simply not possible to get a good look at the tail, but the size and structure were probably a Leach's Petrel.
4 groups of 4-8 Common Dolphins on the way back, and three Porpoise in the Wild Goose Race