Humpback Whale Spotted Off Lambay Island

A HUMPBACK whale has been sighted in the Irish Sea
– Its been almost 20 years  since a Humpback Whale has been spotted of Irish waters.

This wonderful mammal  was spotted almost a year to the day since a young dinghy sailor on a training course encountered a humpback off Howth Head.

This new sighting, recorded late last week and confirmed this week by the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group, was observed by sea kayaker Julia Baer, midway between Rockabill and Lambay.

Group member Matt Comiskey, William Ormsby and friends then spotted it an hour later while sailing on a yacht, Pomma Lady, a mile east of Lambay island.

The whale spent a good 30 minutes “blowing”, within 30 metres of the yacht. It appeared to be travelling south, and the group’s sightings co-ordinator Pádraig Whooley says there is a “very good chance” it could be seen off the east coast in coming days, weather permitting.

“It may be a coincidence, but it may be the same humpback from July 2010.  Unfortunately, we have no strong images from last year’s encounter with the dinghy sailor, which was recorded by Seán Pierce of Shearwater Sea Kayaking,” he added.

“However, the mammals are creatures of habit and they are known to return, like a Boomerang, a frequent visitor to the west Cork coast from 2001,” he said. “We’ve also had re-sightings of two humpbacks off the Kerry coastline in the last few days.  But this one is very exciting for people on the east coast, as humpbacks are still rare enough and tend to be seen on the Atlantic coastline . . .”

Keep us updated on any sightings of this great mammal, and keep your eyes peeled while your out and about – a great spot for a sighting would be Howth Head Cliff Walk,

Click here to discuss this in our Photography Forum