SEAWATCH SW news….

SeaWatch SW survey begins on 15 July!
At the time of writing, last-minute preparations are under way for the start of the SeaWatch SW survey, which will be based at Gwennap Head, Porthgwarra. The project co-ordinator, Russell Wynn, will be manning the watchpoint as core seabird observer for the first 16 days, from 15-31 July (this will be over 200 hours of sea-watching!!). He then hands over to Ken Shaw who watches until 6 August. The core shark observers are students from the National Oceanography Centre (Rafe Holmes, Leire Ordorika and Stephanie Hinder), who are studying Basking Sharks, Ocean Sunfish and other marine animals.

Balearic Shearwaters return to UK coastal waters
After an absence of a couple of months, the first Balearic Shearwaters returned to UK coastal waters in mid-May. Most of the 78 records through May and June were of 1-3 birds seen passing watchpoints in southwest England, although a notable flock of up to 50 birds lingered off Portland Bill from mid-June onwards.

Seabird new to Britain seen from SeaWatch SW watchpoint!
On 25 May an experienced local sea-watcher was lucky enough to see a Masked Booby passing the SeaWatch SW watchpoint at Gwennap Head, Porthgwarra. What was almost certainly the same bird had earlier been seen from a boat off Dorset on 17 May and again from St Catherine’s Point on the Isle of Wight on 19 May.

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