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The Helford is a hive of activity in the Spring time with an abundance of birdlife and fish to look out for.

There’s rumours that basking sharks are on their way to Falmouth Bay so we might be lucky and get a glimpse from the mouth of the river. At this time if the year the river is so quiet and so dolphins have swum up the river and seals, meanwhile the creeks are a hive of activity with nesting birdlife.

Here’s what you might see this Spring on the Helford River and creeks:


Herons – with a massive wing span of upto 195cm!!! Whilst their feathers are grey, their beaks (yellow, black and red) and legs (yellow,pink and brown legs) are brightly coloured. Able to eat small mammals and fish the Helford with it’s farmland and waterways is the perfect environment for the grey heron. Something to look out for is herony on the Helford on Polwheveral Creek, right next to where the oyster farm used to be, but make sure you keep your distance especially with noisy engines so you don’t disturb the nesting birds.

Herons and Little egrets on Frenchman’s Creek

Little Egrets

Little Egrets – their bright white feathers they first came in significant numbers to the UK from 1989. Also lovers of farmland and marine areas the Helford is a perfect spot for them and whilst some migrate, some will stay here all year round. With manificent white plumage, there’s a few varieties of egret that can be found on the Helford clustering together in the ancient oak trees that line the Helford River and creeks.


Kingfishers – we rarely see these in the Spring time. They are about, but are a much more common sighting in the Autumn? Perhaps too busy nesting in the river banks to be flying up and down the creeks showing off their bright blue and russet wings.


Cormorants – Is it a Cormorant or a shag? Both black birds who like to swoop down and swim under water to catch fish. Both have long necks but shags are smaller and have a steep forehead. both can be spotted on the Helford hanging out on the buoys with wings spread drying them out before their next fishing dive. They can dive up to 45 metres!

Curlews – you’ll hear their haunting cry before you see them as their brown speckled feathered keep them well camouflaged. They have amazing long curved beaks too.

Common Seal

Then there’s seals – whilst not resident in the Helford those cheeky, curious grey seals can often be found following a fish or fishing boat up or even following us so keep your eyes peeled!

We have trips available 6 days a week Monday- Saturday with Private Charters available too!

Come and see what’s about this Spring – Cruise times available here.