Diederik D'hert and Jozefien Decoene, Research Surveyors for MARINElife (Registered Charity No. 1110884)
Weather: North-westerly wind force 3 and a moderate sea state. Visibility was good.
Summary of sightings:
Gannet Morus bassanus
Fulmar Fulmarus glacialis 14
Kittiwake Rissa tridactyla 29
Herring gull Larus argentatus 240
Lesser black-backed gull Larus fuscus 54
Great black-backed gull Larus marinus 4
Guillemot Uria aalge 2
Mediterranean gull Larus melanocephalus 2
Black-headed gull Chroicocephalus ridibundus 1
Common tern Sterna hirundo 13
Around noon, we arrived in Calais, ready for check-in. Shortly after boarding the ship and having a chat with the crew, we headed to the bridge and started our survey in relatively calm and dry weather conditions.
Initially we picked up a few tern and a variety of gulls including Herring Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull and Kittiwake, then Gannet as we headed further into the Channel.
As we neared Dover, sea conditions improved, so we crossed our fingers and hoped for some cetacean sightings but, unfortunately, we did not see any during either crossing.
Sightings remained fairly constant throughout the survey, although we saw more Fulmar during the journey back to Calais. After thanking the captain and the crew on arrival in Calais, we headed back to Belgium.