On Wednesday 5th May at 4.30pm, two orcas named ‘John Coe’ and ‘Aquarius’ were seen in the waters surrounding the Minack Theatre. They were identified by the shape and notches of their dorsal fins and patches of colouration near their eyes and on their backs which makes them easily recognisable and which can be used to track these individuals around the UK’s coastline. Cornwall Wildlife Trust occasionally receives reports of orcas in Cornwall but has not been able to confirm many previous sightings due to their similarity to risso’s dolphins and a lack of photographic evidence.
Abby Crosby, Marine Conservation Officer at Cornwall Wildlife Trust, said:
“The Trust’s Seaquest Southwest team were incredibly excited to hear about this orca report, and even more delighted when the photos received then validated the record and identified these rare and beautiful individuals as John Coe and Aquarius. This is the first official orca record in our databases with associated photos in over a decade, and further proof of the value of our coastal seas in supporting these magnificent creatures.”