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Updated: Sep 25, 2022

MARINElife once again has two surveyors taking part in the CEFAS Peltic survey. For 2022 our surveyors are Peter Howlett and Nuala Campbell. Today Nuala gives a flavour of arrival and a day spent alongside in Swansea dock.

September 24th

On arrival at the CEFAS Endeavour, docked in Swansea, CEFAS scientists, crew and MARINElife surveyors were given safety induction, fire alarm drills, life raft drills and ship familiarisation by Safety Officer Josh. Voyage and survey briefing by Ship's Master, Captain Paul Kersey and greeted previous shipmates and new colleagues and later watched the sunset over Swansea Port, Kings Dock.

Arklow Willow departing for Gijon, Spain (Nuala Campbell)

While waiting here for supply loading and equipment checks before setting off on our expected 5-week survey, there is plenty to see around the ship.

In daylight there are Grey Heron, Little Egret, Cormorant, Great and Lesser Black-backed, Herring and Black-headed Gulls in non-breeding plumage on and around the dock. Among the landbirds wharf-side are Robin, Rock Pipit, Grey Wagtail, Starling and Crow. A pair of Raven displayed, and Sparrowhawk soared overhead and, rising to the surface of the dock, schools of Grey Mullet, swirling around looking for floating food.

Grey Mullet (Nuala Campbell)

Best of all, my survey partner Peter Howlett, pointed out two Spoonbills flying off inland, below the cumulus clouds.

We were meant to sail late afternoon but sadly, some technical issues on board are likely to delay departure by a day or two so we may have to spend a while longer yet looking at the dock area.

Nuala Campbell

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