Minke Whale swims around our boat

Bridlington, East Yorkshire

by Martin G.

It’s a privilege to be part of the team at Yorkshire Coast Nature. For over a year we have been wondering about trying new kinds of pelagic trips. Credit to Rich Baines especially and Steve Race for ‘pushing ahead’. Last Friday morning a group of 7 of us headed out on the first exploratory trip. Bridlington harbour at 5 am is pretty quiet! A beautiful sunrise greeted us, lighting up a motionless North Sea. Unfortunately an algae bloom and no wind meant no fish for birds, and no smells carried on wind, hence few seabirds.

At 9 miles out after a few Arctic Terns, Manx Shearwater, Arctic Skua and fine close Harbour Porpoise, I picked up a  Minke Whale c 500 yards off the boat. We were chumming and had gathered Fulmar and Herring Gulls. We knew from watching Minke off Filey that they loved to come into the midst of gull feeding frenzies.

And that’s exactly what this one did. 

Watch the video- it’s only about 2.5 minutes long with the most amazing view at 1 and half minutes- full nose to tail and white banded pectoral fins. Check out Rich’s reaction soon after that. Enjoy!

North Atlantic Minke Whale Balaenoptera acutorostrata acutorostrata , 9 miles off Bridlington, 26th July 2013

Not often you get such close views of a Whale around Britain’s coast albeit  not a huge one (also known as Lesser Rorqual). It swam around the boat, under the boat, and was visible underwater, rolling to show its belly. Bit of a once-in-a-lifetime!

Here’s a few pics to give a sense of surroundings, beginning with sunrise as we head out:

ycn 3

YCN pelagic 2 jpg

YCN pelagic 1

.

With several more Yorkshire Coast Nature exploratory pelagics planned this summer/autumn, be interesting to see what we get. We’ll be reporting back, so watch this space!

I also help out with calling on the RSPB Skua and Shearwater Cruises out of Bridlington. It does very well on most trips. 🙂

One thought on “Minke Whale swims around our boat

  1. Pingback: Good English whale news | Dear Kitty. Some blog

Leave a Reply