As we were getting ourselves organized, heading out of the harbour, a sudden “Risso’s” shout, surprised us all. Right outside Stornoway a big group of Risso’s dolphins were foraging and treated us with a couple of playful tail-lobbings. Once more, we might have been lucky enough to capture one of the hybrids on camera. Future analysis, by professional researchers who we send our photos too, will show if we indeed had hybrids amongst the Risso’s.
Lots of tell-tale scars on this Risso's dolphin observed tail-lobbing (slapping the water with its tail)
As we followed the beautiful coastline of Lewis we were also lucky to find a minke whale on the way towards the Shiants. Our full day trips really offer a lot to our guests, since there are so many different birds that can be seen feeding, or just floating on the water. We often see Manx shearwaters along the way, these agile birds are not big, but that makes their migration routes even more impressive! Come March they usually show up here on small offshore islands to breed and stay in UK waters until July. Then they start their migration towards South America where they usually spend their winter.
A pod of dolphins shadows our boat.
Once again the Shiants did not disappoint us! The sights and sounds of eating your lunch surrounded by puffins, razorbills, shags, guillemots and many more is quite humbling.
As we continued on our journey we came across a small group of common short-beaked dolphins. They were in a little bay and came to bow-ride for a bit. Delighted by their playful nature, we left them on our way back towards Stornoway. On our way home we crossed paths with another group of common short-beaked dolphins, which once more came for a bow-ride. Just before we arrived back in Stornoway we checked out a white-tailed sea eagle's nest location and found one young eagle that just fledged and one of the adults sitting on the rocks underneath the nest. The trip highlighted to us all yet again the unique and beautiful adventures we get to have in these stunning waters.
Juvenile white-tailed sea eagle
Please do come join in our adventures and have a day trip or book a longer cruise with us this summer - or we are now taking names for interest lists for next years' cruises too! You can find all the details and contact us via our website at www.hebrideanadventures.co.uk