Feeding frenzy off Hook Head: Dolphins and whales put on quite a show

 

WILDLIFE PHOTOGRAPHER George Karbus has described images he captured of fin whales and dolphins hunting for herrings off the coast of Co Wexford as among his greatest photographs.

The whales, the second- largest living mammal, were spotted about 3km off Hook Head in Co Wexford on Sunday.

Czech-born Karbus, who specialises in wildlife, water and landscape photography, said the dolphins were seen about half an hour before the arrival of the whales.

“It is really hard to capture images of fin whales because they move incredibly fast, so to see them together feeding in one place was amazing and I was able to get some special images.”

“I’d say it was one of the best days of my working life because the sea was flat and there was no wind and there was glassy water which is the ideal,” he said.

“I have followed whales and dolphins around the world but what I saw and captured on Sunday was really special,” he added.

Karbus, who has lived in Lahinch, Co Clare, for the past six years, first became interested in water photography in Ireland.

According to the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group, the south coast of Ireland is an important site for fin whales and provides excellent research opportunities due to their closeness to land.

A recent study by the group says 62 individual fin whales have been identified off the south coast in recent years, of which 40 have been seen just once.