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first eco tour of the 2011 season

Having enjoyed some fine settled weather recently we took off for our first eco tour of the 2011season on April 10th and were rewarded with some good sightings. Some 600 grey seals were basking on the Blasket Island beach, Trá Bán, after what looks like another successful breeding season last year. The majority of them will stay around the Blasket islands, with some of them migrating to summer grounds.

We were delighted, too, with getting our first sightings up close of the Blasket islands puffin colony on Inisvickilaun and Inisnabró. The puffins disperse out into the Atlantic in the winter and only spend the summer breeding months on solid ground on the islands.

Another migrating bird, the Manx Shearwater, was also back in numbers, shearing the waves and resting in large flocks around the Blaskets. They migrate all the way to South America in the winter and breed in underground burrows on the Blasket islands where they avail of predator free breeding grounds.

In an area in Dingle Bay known as the Wild Bank we came across a minke whale and also spotted some harbour porpoises. As up to four minke whales were recently spotted from a land based watch by Nick Massett, we are hoping to enjoy many more sightings of them in the coming days - and for the rest of the season...


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