Captured on camera: SealCam goes live in Falmouth

PUBLISHED: 15:01 16 October 2013 | UPDATED: 15:01 16 October 2013

An Atlantic Grey Seal basking on the rocks in Falmouth Harbour (courtesy of David Barnicoat)

An Atlantic Grey Seal basking on the rocks in Falmouth Harbour (courtesy of David Barnicoat)

Archant

A webcam has been installed at the Falmouth Coastguard station, to capture live footage of the harbour and seals at Black Rock to assist with the creation of a database of Cornwall’s grey seal population.

Falmouth Harbour Commissioners has set up the ‘SealCam’ to help the Cornwall Seal Group monitor, identify and record the seals, using photo identification of the unique markings on their coats.

The footage generated by SealCam will help inform the Falmouth Seal Photo Identification Project (FalPip), which aims to help researchers better understand local seals.

Seal specialist from Cornwall Seal Group Sue Sayer said: “SealCam will enable us to finally establish the age and sex profiles of the seals using Falmouth’s Black Rock at low tide and their seasonal habits in the area. SealCam will hugely enhance our photo identification of seals here and enable us to make a greater number of links with other sites around the Cornish coast and Celtic Sea. We can’t wait to discover the seal secrets of Black Rock!”

SealCam will stream live webcam footage of Falmouth Bay, Carrick Roads and Black Rock and is available to watch online at via the ‘sustainability’ section of FHC’s webpage www.falmouthport.co.uk

As well as offering an exciting new opportunity to monitor the activity of seals, the webcam will also be of use to harbour users who wish to check physical conditions in the bay.

Falmouth Harbour Commissioners’ Environment Manager, Harriet Knowles said: “SealCam is available for all our harbour users to enjoy. We hope people will make the most of the opportunity to survey seals at Black Rock, but also use the webcam to monitor the weather and sea state before using the water ways, and look-out for interesting vessels calling at Falmouth’s busy port.”

James Instance, Manager at the Marine Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC) Falmouth, added: “This new webcam gives people all over the world the opportunity to observe the ever changing conditions in Falmouth Bay, meaning many more can keep an eye on maritime activity in the area, which will undoubtedly help us keep this beautiful environment as clean and as safe as possible.”

To view the SealCam on Black Rock, visit falmouthport.co.uk/commercial/html/environment.php

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