A pod of bottlenose dolphins have delighted workers from Shoreham Port.
The group of dolphins treated tug masters from the port's marine team to a show while they carried out seabed levelling works in Newhaven Port this week.
James Gray, assistant harbour master said: "Our tug crew at Shoreham Port were thrilled to capture this footage of a pod of eight to ten dolphins while providing seabed levelling services to Newhaven Port aboard our new tug boat Acamar from Monday to Wednesday.
“With two tug boats now working as part of our fleet, we have increased our availability to assist clients with their requirements for seabed levelling, often working alongside dredgers to improve their efficiency or post dredge to work the hard to reach areas and reduce any residual high spots. We look forward to assisting other ports in the near future - and hopefully capturing more exciting footage to share with our local community and stakeholders."
This is not the first time dolphins have been filmed frolicking off the Sussex coast. Pods were also seen off Shoreham last year: Watch 'amazing' moment boat followed by 10 dolphins off Shoreham coast
Seabed levelling is a modern-day dredging technique used in ports and harbours, where a plough is towed behind a tugboat along the seabed, dragging high spots and ridges out to make an even surface.
The plough is fitted with teeth to cut into the seabed, efficiently moving materials such as clay, sand, silt and gravel over short distances. This work is essential to maintain level entrances and ensure that berths are kept at their chartered depths.
Shoreham Port received a new tug boat in September last year - Acamar - which visited Newhaven. Acamar is fitted with a seven-tonne winch for plough-dredging and survey equipment to monitor the plough's progress. She joins her sister tug, Adurni, which has provided dredging services since the early 1990s.
Dave Collins-Williams, Newhaven harbour master, said: “I would like to say that Newhaven welcomes the Acamar on her inaugural visit and I am sure that Shoreham Port will continue to work closely and efficiently with Newhaven, as they have always done so in the interest of mutual cooperation. The Adurni has provided a very good service for many years and the addition of another vessel will ensure that service continues.”