'Incredible' superpod of more than 200 dolphins spotted in Helford River

  • Watch the moment a superpod of dolphins passed through the Helford River

Footage captured the 'incredible' moment a superpod of more than 200 dolphins was spotted in Cornwall.

Paddleboarders on the Helford river, between Falmouth bay and the Lizard Peninsula, were left in awe when more than 200 common dolphins swam through the river on their way back to sea.

Amanda Leonard was paddleboarding when she shot the footage.

She told ITV News West Country: “I've seen smaller pods at a distance, and I was once lucky enough to see Risso Dolphins pass by. 

"But this was an incredible experience, the fact that there were so many of them passing in waves. 

“It's hard to pick out in the video, but one of the breeches in line with us was a very small calf.  Their power of them was incredible and those underwater were creating a bow wave. 

“It seemed many stayed under passing us, but then 40 meters on so many of them breached.  One group did turn back around us and they were tail-slapping. 

“Lots of noise, just incredible.  So hard to put a number on them.  The group in the video made up about one-fifth of the total.  I'd say there were 200 minimum.”

Cornwall Wildlife Trust said that common dolphins are often spotted in groups which will approach boats.

They are an offshore species but often come close to shore to feed. They travel at speed and frequently leap from the water.

A number of dolphins breached the water closer to the sea

The creatures feed mainly on fish and will work together to herd prey into a ball. They can grow up to 2.7 metres, weighing up to 150kg.

The Wildlife Trust added that superpods are 'usually formed at sea' and can be made up of 'thousands of individuals'. They are most commonly spotted in December and January.

Amanda said: “I think the dolphins were following fish. I was very pleased to see them leave the Helford as the tide dropped as they can become stranded on the mud flats if they get confused.

“It was very important for us not to block their route to the sea and for motorboats particularly not to get too close.”