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Lundy WLO report Ilfracombe-Lundy 13 April

It is always exciting to arrive at the pier in anticipation of what we will see on the trip to Lundy.  This time I was to be joined by the monthly survey team, my fellow MARINElife colleagues Rick Morris and Peter Hopkin. We collected our tickets and were soon boarding the Oldenburg, where we were warmly greeted by Captain Jason and other members of the crew.

I headed out onto the deck to join my fellow passengers. The visibility was moderate, with some white tops cresting the waves. The crossing was quiet with just a few Herring Gull, Razorbill, Guillemot and Manx Shearwater. Under the cliffs of Lundy several Shag in full breeding plumage were swimming around.  The Survey team reported that during the crossing they had a brief view of two Harbour Porpoise.

Adult Shag (Library photo: Steve McAusland)

On arriving on Lundy, we heard that earlier some rare migrants had been seen around the Millcombe Valley. This was confirmed when shortly afterwards a Night Heron flew along the cliffs.  The bird ringers were taking a male Blackcap from their nets when we passed. We stayed in the valley area, where it was sheltered, to look for other migrants.

This proved to be very rewarding with good views of an Icelandic Redwing, male Pied Flycatcher and best of all a stunning male Golden Oriole. The Night Heron flew up the valley and briefly rested in one of the nearby trees. Willow Warbler and a Chiffchaff were in the bushes around our lunchtime seat. After all the exciting views I just had time for a quick dash up to the Marisco Tavern for a cup of coffee, before heading back to the Oldenburg.

Common Dolphin (Library photo: Peter Howlett)

Leaving the bay a group of Grey Seal were lying on the outer rocks. Razorbill were the most prominent bird on the return crossing.  About halfway across, a Grey Seal was seen swimming towards Lundy. Later there was a very brief glimpse of a Common Dolphin.

On arrival back in Ilfracombe I collected my bags, thanked the crew for another good trip and said goodbye to my survey colleagues.

Weather: cloudy on both passages, sea state 4, wind force 3-4

Summary of sightings

Marine Mammals

Common Dolphin 1



Herring Gull






Manx Shearwater


Wildlife on Lundy

Grey Seal


Golden Oriole

Night Heron

Pied Flycatcher

Willow Warbler


Icelandic Redwing



House Martin


House Sparrow


Carrion Crow



Herring Gull

Great Black-backed Gull

Lesser Black-backed Gull


Peregrine Falcon

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