MARINElife Wildlife Officer Report: Condor Ferries ‘Vitesse’ Weymouth–Guernsey 3 September 2014

Ellen Last, Wildlife Officer for MARINElife

Outward - sunny, dry with light winds, visibility not great due to haze.
Return - much glare, dry with slightly stronger winds

Summary of sightings:

Marine Mammals
Harbour Porpoise, Phocoena phocoena 3

Fulmar Fulmarus glacialis
Gannet Morus bassanus
Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo
Shag Phalacrocorax aristotelis
Black-headed Gull Chroicocephalus ridibundus
Herring Gull Larus argentatus
Commic Tern Sterna hirundo/paradisaea

As we departed Weymouth I managed to see Black-headed Gull and a flock of Cormorants, this despite the hazy conditions. On the crossing the passengers who joined me spotted a couple of fins which I was able to identify as Harbour Porpoise. There were numerous Gannet to watch all the way to Guernsey and another Harbour Porpoise sighting added some further excitement.

Harbour Porpoise Peter Howlett 16
Harbour Porpoise (Archive photo: Peter Howlett)

In Guernsey harbour there were quite a few Commic Tern and Shag to look at. After dise
mbarking I bought some lunch and passed the time ashore by walking up to Castle Cornet and having a delicious lemon meringue ice cream!

On the return journey there was quite a lot of glare, which meant it became very difficult to observe, despite this many Gannets were seen. On the approach to Weymouth harbour I sighted a Cormorant and a Fulmar.

Castle Cornet Ellen Last
Castle Cornet (Photo: Ellen Last)

The passengers who joined me thoroughly enjoyed their day and gained a good insight into the species that occur in the English Channel. Many thanks go to Condor Ferries for supporting the work of MARINElife.