Photographs sought after rare dolphin sighting off Shoreham
A dolphin was reported at the mouth of Shoreham Harbour on December 30.
The creature was spotted in the sea at 12.30pm and reported to the Sea Watch Foundation.
Stephen Savage, Sussex regional co-ordinator for the foundation, said that by the time they arrived, the dolphin had moved on.
Further investigations suggested it might be a common dolphin, but the foundation was still looking into this, he added.
“ We would really like to hear from anyone who saw the dolphin and especially interested in photographs that could confirm the identification of the species,” said Stephen.
“The other possibility is that it was a porpoise, which may also be seen in winter months.”
Dolphins are largely summer visitors to Sussex, especially the bottlenose dolphin, which is the more commonly seen species.
Stephen explained that information on the movements of sea mammals in Sussex waters was vital in their future protection.
“While we commonly record seals in the winter months, an inshore dolphin sighting is far more unusual for this time of year,” he added.
Sightings reported last year included a large seal (possibly a common seal) just off the beach at Lancing at 4pm on Sunday, August 26.
A seal was also seen in the River Adur on Friday, June 29, while the river was high, swimming back and forth near the Norfolk Bridge.
It was hoped this was the rescued seal Twinkle, which had been released the year before, and can be identified by an orange tag on its hind flipper and facial markings.
Find out more about Sussex sea mammal sightings on Stephen’s weblog at sussexmarinejottings.blogspot.co.uk
To report a sighting, Stephen can be contacted at email@example.com
This year’s National Whale and Dolphin Watch will be held between July 27 and August 4.
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Weather for Shoreham
Wednesday 19 June 2013
Temperature: 14 C to 23 C
Wind Speed: 10 mph
Wind direction: North
Temperature: 13 C to 17 C
Wind Speed: 14 mph
Wind direction: South east