Killer Whale spotted off coast of Kerry

Published by Conor Mulvihill on

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            30th of June 2016

bye whale

This has been a great season for the amount of rare and unique animals spotted along the Irish coast including sharks and dolphins. However a recent sighting of a killer whale was particularly breath-taking off the coast of Kerry. Photographer Richard Creigh managed to capture some amazing photos of the Orca while on the Blasket Islands Eco Marine Tour on Monday.

This wasn’t just any Orca but a male named John Coe, a member of a group that are usually located off the Western coast of Scotland and according to the Irish Whale and Dolphin Groups he is one of the infamous killer whales in the British Isles. This Orca was first photographed off the Scottish Hebrides back in 1983.

John Coe can be identified by the large notch on the base of the trailing edge of his dorsal fin. The last time he was spotted near Ireland was off the Mayo coast back in 2013.

The IWDG have mentioned how it was unusual for John Coe to travel alone, as he would normally be with at least one other pod member, often a female named Nicola. They have also highlighted their concern for the survival of John Coe’s pod. One of the major issues is that there has been no new members to this pod meaning that this pod will eventually die off. This would be a great loss to marine biodiversity in the area.

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Conor Mulvihill

Conor is Communications Assistant with the Irish Environmental Network. His background is in science and he has a masters in international relations.