A special place... The Isles of Scilly are one of only two places in England where Manx Shearwaters breed
Under threat...The Isles of Scilly hold 3,000 fewer pairs of breeding seabirds than 25 years ago
We need YOUR help to protect our important seabird heritage
Scillonian III RSPB Wildlife Cruise Fri 18/3/2016
We departed on a calm sea, with a light easterly wind, mild and sunny. Between Penzance and Wolf lighthouse we saw a flock of 21 drake Common Scoter and later a male Pintail tailgating another single Scoter. Other sightings were 7 Common Gulls (not common down here), 1 Mediterranean Gull, 21 Gannets, 5 Fulmar. Auks were feeding and resting off the Cornish coast with only 2 Razorbills but 99 Guillemots. Also seen were 4 Kittiwakes, 12 GBB Gulls, 30 Herring Gulls, 1 LBB Gulls. A squeak, sounding mechanical turned out to be a male House Sparrow up top hitching a lift to well beyond Wolf.
From Wolf to St Mary's, a still calm sea produced 8 Gannets, 9 Razorbill, 10 Guillemot, 3 Fulmar, 5 Kittiwake and a Great Northern Diver.
The return trip was in a slightly stronger and colder easterly wind. A different Great Northern Diver was seen as we sailed between St Mary's and St Agnes. Up-to Wolf it was quite with 3 Gannets, 2 Razorbill, 1 LBB Gull, 8 Fulmar six of which were cleansing a flapping surprisingly early Sunfish! A single Bottlenose Dolphin showed briefly.
From Wolf to Penzance in ever failing light a solitary Manx Shearwater.86 Guillemots were now on the move westward, 24 Gannets, 1 Fulmar, and hundreds of Herring Gulls ready for roosting at Mousehole. Another single brief and later 3 distant Common Dolphins.
Brian Craven & Viv Stratton
Scillonian Wildlife Volunteers