Volunteer Seabirds At Sea (VSAS) surveys were carried out from the bridge of the MV Loch Seaforth on a scheduled return crossing between Ullapool and Stornoway on May 11th, 2019.
Data were collected to European Seabirds At Sea (ESAS) standard, by trained volunteers, using the JNCC VSAS app to digitally record data in real time.
Environmental conditions were excellent for surveying, with visibility recorded as excellent throughout. Sea state was predominantly recorded as one (with occasional sea state three recorded) and Beaufort wind strengths were recorded as one throughout. Swell heights were generally below one metre. Survey conditions don't get much better than that!
A total of 232 observations were made of 14 species of seabirds (and a further three 'species groups' where identification could not be made to species level) during the dedicated survey effort. Two species of marine mammals were observed. Numbers of observations and total numbers of birds and mammals recorded are presented in the full report, available here.