Third humpback whale spotted off Cornish coast

The humpback whale was spotted in St Ives Bay. Credit: Tash Murch/Cornwall Wildlife Trust

A third humpback whale has been spotted off the Cornish coast, in addition to two others currently believed to be in the area.

The animal, nicknamed 'Humpy', has been seen in waters off Cornwall, South Wales and the Isle of Man so far this year.

According to Cornwall Wildlife Trust, on Saturday 13 January there were reports of the humpback on social media, from Manx Whale and Dolphin Watch.

It was later seen and re-identified by the Sea Trust at Fishguard, South Wales, on several occasions between the 19 – 27 January, and became known as ‘Humpy’.

On the afternoon of Thursday 1 February, a humpback whale was sighted by Seaquest surveyor Tash Murch in St Ives Bay in Cornwall.

She was able to snap some photos that were clear and detailed enough to show markings on the whale’s back and dorsal fin on both sides.

She sent them in to the South West England Humpback Whale Photo-identification Catalogue.

Our team were thrilled when initially they could not match it to the two whales currently known to be in the area.

Using online photos, they checked the individual against 'Humpy' for a match, which was quickly confirmed.

Cornwall Wildlife Trust said this was the first time a whale had been identified locally, and in two other regions of the UK, in one go.

Have you seen a humpback? Record your sighting here: