A WILDLIFE photographer has managed to capture images of a hunting otter close to Mousehole.
Simon Maycock said he had originally gone down to the water’s edge to photograph birds just before Christmas when he encountered the animal as it swam along with its lunch - quite a large fish.
Mr Maycock, who lives in the port, said it was one of the highlights of his year, adding that otters are rarely spotted in the wild, especially so close up.
“I was just looking on the seafront,” he said.
“It was very rough, so seeing it was even more surprising. I saw the otter and was very excited to witness it. I’m lucky.”
The 54-year-old said when he told others of his sighting they were intrigued by his experiences.
“I’ve shown people the photos,” he explained. “Someone who lives nearby said in all his years there he hadn’t ever seen an otter.
“It was really great to see - and even better to see it catch a fish, swimming along.”
Cornwall Wildlife Trust said that according to its records there had only been 19 reports of otters within 1km of Mousehole between 1979 and 2011.
Mr Maycock also said he had seen an otter near Marazion, not far from Mousehole, once before and suggested the quality of water must be high, considering.
He added he got into shooting wildlife and landscape photography after being inspired by his surroundings following his move from Warrington around 15 years ago. He said the natural environment was a big pull, and became interested in the art as he explored the area.
An IT consultant by day, Mr Maycock said he tries to get out as much as possible and said photography is his “biggest passion”. He said he also recently managed to capture an osprey mid-flight in Hayle.
“I caught a picture of an osprey getting a fish,” he said. “These two events were fantastic for me. I didn't know either were in the area - I was just in the right place at the right time”
Mr Maycock is a contributor to the Cornwall Bird Watching and Preservation Society.