Over the last couple of years, we have seen increasing local records of two ocean giants.

Humpback Whale

Ongoing conservation work to reduce whaling (still a few persistent countries!) appears to be at last making a difference for the Humpback Whale. Increasing numbers in the Western Atlantic (US) populations seems to be leading to an increasing population in the Mid Atlantic (Canaries / Azores), and perhaps re-colonisation of the historic Eastern Atlantic migration route.  There seems to be a very small but increasing trend, with two to three mobile animals wintering off the Cornish coast. A whale sighting in Mounts Bay looked interesting, so keep a look out and hope this trend continues this winter.

Tuna

Long-term restrictions on fishing for North Atlantic Giant Bluefin Tuna also seem to be having an effect, with an increase in Tuna sightings. This is especially so over the last few years, when there have been more regular sightings.

Bluefin tuna can be quite aerial when hunting, often taking full breaching leaps out of the water.  They are a fast-growing fish, which can reach 3 metres in length, so significantly bigger than a Harbour Porpoise (up to 2 m long) and Common Dolphin (2.5 m). The Lizard Wildlife Watch Point is a good place to look, with the most recent sightings having been between August and October.

 

Published: Nov 2017
Author: Tony Blunden