A pod of more than a dozen dolphins spotted close to the coast has sparked excitement among conservationists.

Roughly 15 bottlenose dolphins were seen just 500 metres out from the West Pier, Brighton, last Sunday (June 18) and caught on video by lifeguards.

Researchers began exploring the movements and numbers of dolphins in our area in 2019, who say although we have a better understanding of the aquatic mammals, there is still plenty left to learn.

“It’s brilliant to see this pod so close to the shore, we’ve even had sightings from as close as 20 metres  away from the beach,” said Lloyd Gofton, director of the Sussex Dolphin Project.

“But it’s essential that we continue to monitor and research them using both citizen science and our own research.”

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Until four years ago there was relatively little knowledge about the dolphins which appear in Sussex waters.

“They’re not residents here, but they move up and down the Channel,” said Lloyd.

“We can also say sighting have gone up year on year since 2019.”