Humpback Whale Watching Boat Trips in October

2 humpbacks travelling together 2

    Two humpback whales north of Blaskets, 24.09. 2013

26 fluke

     Humpback fluking north of Blasket Islands, 24.09.2013

                                                    Photos: Britta Wilkens

Dedicated whale watching trips in October


For the month of October Blasket Islands Eco Marine Tours will be changing their schedule and go out on dedicated whale watching trips lasting about four and a half to five hrs departing from Ventry Harbour - Ceann Trá - at 13:00hrs and returning at approx. 17:30 / 18:00hrs depending on distance travelled, sightings etc.

Our next dedicated whale watching trips are on Tues and Wednesday, October 8th and 9th; then we are off for a few days working on the IWDG research vessel "Celtic Mist", and from Monday October 14th to the end of October we hope to run these extended whale watching trips, weather and sea conditions permitting and with a minimum of ten passengers to cover our costs etc.


Interestingly information is filtering in that tuna are being caught at the moment about 10 miles west of the Blasket islands and there are also substantial shoals of herring , sprat and mackerel.

On Saturday October 5th while anchored at Great Blasket island we saw two large trawlers go through the Blasket Sound south to north very, very deep in the water and obviously fully loaded with herring, mackerel or sprat and probably heading for a designated port as part of crazy EU regulations instead of landing at nearest port - Dingle.

This abundance of fish nearby and offshore from the Blasket islands indicates that there is also quite a lot of large whale activity a little further offshore than our extended normal trips and if we can drum up enough interest from enough people [ten or twelve] we think an eight hour trip offshore would produce some interesting sightings. This pelagic trip would be about 30 miles offshore from Ventry Harbour and should also be of interest to birders.

For more information you can call Mick Sheeran on 086 3353805.

More new humpback whales for Irish waters


On September 25th our crew took a bit of a busman's holiday and went on a late evening trip with our friend Nick Massett who has been spending the last few months staking out the humpback whale activity off the Dingle Peninsula. He has already been able to identify a couple of new animals to Irish waters this year, with possibly a couple more in the pipeline - pending photo id confirmation. These are exciting times for humpback whale research in Co Kerry, and we are hoping to visit their feeding grounds during the month of October during our special autumn trips.


An interesting aspect of the presence of some of these recent humpback whale sightings in Irish waters is that there appears to be a juvenile with this group and also a baby and it makes looking for them again and hopefully finding them all the more exciting! The fact that Nick Massett and Britta Wilkens are perhaps the only people in Ireland to have seen a grouping of up to 6 humpback whales together in Irish waters, off the Blasket islands [one quarter the recorded Irish population!] is worth noting. It may or may not be the stuff for the Guinness Book of Records but we think they deserve congratulations for dedictated whale watching.


Why not come and join us during the last two weeks of October, weather and sea conditions permitting, to see if we can again encounter the latest and youngest additions to the Irish humpback whale catalogue in the waters of West Kerry before they possibly move south in November and December to the waters of our neighbours in West Cork where you will also be able to take whale watching trips.





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Ventry / Ceann Trá
Dingle Peninsula, Co. Kerry

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