The team surveying marine wildlife from the Scillonian have recorded hundreds of sightings this season.
Common Dolphin, image credit: ORCA
Marine mammal surveyors from ORCA saw six different species of cetacean plus seals, sharks, sunfish and tuna.
ORCA works to identify and protect critical whale and dolphin habitats by placing volunteer marine mammal surveyors on ferries and cruise ships. They conduct regular scientific surveys on the Scillonian, recording species, where they are and what they are doing. They also run talks for passengers and activities on deck and land.
Risso's Dolphin, image credit: Elfyn Pugh ORCA
ORCA recordings over 17 separate trips during April - October 18:
Bottlenose dolphin - 4
Basking shark - 2
Common dolphin - 385
Grey seal - 27
Harbour porpoise - 80
Pilot whale -1
Medium cetacean -1
Minke whale - 5
Risso’s dolphin -10
Small cetacean - 5
Unidentified shark - 3
Tuna - 4
Unidentified dolphin - 26
Total = 563
The data collected on the Scillonian is used for ORCA’s conservation work, helping UK and European policymakers to create effective marine conservation strategies and to create safer spaces for whales and dolphins around the UK.