Basking shark
Basking shark

Monthly Sightings Reports

HWDT’s Community Sightings Network encourages residents, local wildlife operators and visitors to the area to report their sightings of whales, dolphins and porpoises to HWDT. This information is important because it contributes to our understanding of where and when particular species occur. Report your sighting HERE.

Each month HWDT publishes a summary report of the sightings recorded via our Community Sightings Network. In summer we receive the greatest number of sightings while winter is a quiet time. This is partly due to the number of species present but also reflects the sea state and number of people on the water watching for whales, dolphins and porpoises. In winter, fewer people are watching and the sea state more frequently makes sightings difficult, or even impossible. Also non-resident species have migrated for the winter. At this time of year HWDT receives more strandings reports than at other time as storms can wash animals ashore. These seasonal variations will be reflected in our reports.

Select the monthly report you wish to view from the panel on the left of this page.

March 2009

On the 19th March, HWDT received a report of approximately 30 bottlenose dolphins off Tarbert in Loch Fyne, almost the entire Inner Hebridean population!  The large group were sighted in the morning and, through-out the day, broke up into smaller pods.  Alongside juveniles and adults there were small calves present.  Another small group of bottlenoses were sighted in the Kyles of Bute the following day, we can assume that these individuals were part of the larger group but can't be definitive without photographic evidence.

The Inner Hebridean dolphins range from Skye to Kintyre and HWDT has found that there's a population of about 30-40 animals inhabiting the area.  The dolphins are usually seen in small groups of up to five individuals so it's rare to see such a large group, although not unheard of; in October 2007 almost all of the Inner Hebridean population was sighted in Kilchoan Bay, Ardnamurchan.       

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