National Whale and Dolphin Watch: 28th July - 5th August 2018

Here at HWDT we believe in promoting collaboration and developing partnerships to conserve and celebrate the Hebrides, and our diverse marine environment. We would like to invite everyone to get involved in whale, dolphin and porpoise surveys around our coast as part of a national event alongside our conservation partners, Sea Watch Foundation.

National Whale and Dolphin Watch (NWDW) is an exciting annual marine mammal monitoring event that aims to get as many people as possible looking out to sea all around the UK. As Sea Watch Regional Coordinator for the west coast we help organise watches throughout our region with the support of local volunteers. NWDW is now in its 17th year of surveys, and last year Scotland came out on top with the most sightings of whales, dolphins and porpoises!

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Data collected during NWDW surveys helps provide a snapshot of the distribution of whales, dolphins and porpoises all around the UK and contributes to the UK national database which helps us better understand our marine wildlife and can be used to inform policy decisions to protect these magnificent creatures.

By getting involved with a national survey like NWDW we can all contribute to a better understanding of the UK as whole, and help place our region into a wider perspective. It’s really easy to get involved, and a great excuse to head out and enjoy our beautiful coastline. The more eyes on the sea the better!
— Siobhan Moran - Hebridean Whale Trail Officer

We have already had a great start to NWDW, with a whale of a day up at Tiumpanhead on the Isle of Lewis. We joined the local community café to collect and share stories from the sea and then braved with rain up at the Lighthouse for a sea watch at this iconic location.

We would love to see the Hebrides well represented in the National Whale and Dolphin Watch, and it's a great time to head out spotting as there are events happening right across the Hebrides from here in Lewis, over to Skye, Mull and the mainland. NWDW is really easy to take part in, either by joining a pre-arranged watch, carrying out your own survey from anywhere around our coast or by logging your sightings on our free app Whale Track.

Logging your sightings or recording your excursions using Whale Track outside of NWDW surveys also contributes to the national database, as we share all of our data with Sea Watch Foundation so that Scotland's west coast is well represented at a national level. The Hebrides has seen some fantastic sightings recently, including appearances from John Coe of the West Coast Community and Knobble the minke whale, two of our local celebrities.

Please do join in with NWDW, and keep putting your sightings up on Whale Track ... we will keep our fingers crossed for some spectacular sightings!

 There has been some stunning sightings of whales, dolphins and porpoises across the Hebrides this week, so there really couldn't be a better time to go out spotting!

There has been some stunning sightings of whales, dolphins and porpoises across the Hebrides this week, so there really couldn't be a better time to go out spotting!


Dates for National Whale and Dolphin Watch events across the Hebrides:


Saturday 28th July

Location: Tiumpanhead Lighthouse, Isle of Lewis
Time: 1530 – 1730
Contact info: siobhan.moran@hwdt.org
Additional info: 1100 – 1500 join us at the community café to share stories from the sea. Meet at the lighthouse at 1530 for the watch. Parking is limited on site but available in the village a short walk away.

Location: Kilt Rock, Nr Staffin, Isle of Skye
Time: 1600 – 1800
Contact Info: Sylvia Porter, 07787 569330

Monday 30th July

Location: Duart Castle, Isle of Mull
Time: 1400 - 1600
Contact info: HWDT, 01688 302620

Tuesday 31st July

Location: Rubha Hunish, Isle of Skye
Time: 1200 – 1500
Contact Info:      Peggy Semler, 07941 152483
Additional Info: Meet at car park at Kilmaluag (NG435752) at 1130.

Wednesday 1st August

Location: Ardnamurchan Lighthouse
Time: 1400 - 1600
Contact info: siobhan.moran@hwdt.org
Additional info: Meet at the foghorn at 2pm, or at the Kilchoan Learning Centre at 1.30pm to share transport. This will be followed by a talk about Hebridean whales, dolphins and porpoises at the Kilchoan Learning Centre at 7pm.

Location: Rigg Viewpoint, Isle of Skye
Time: 1600 – 1800
Contact Info: Sylvia Porter, 07787 569330

Thursday 2nd August

Location: Stoer Beach, NW Highlands
Time: 1100 – 1500
Contact: summer.highlifehighland.com

Friday 3rd August

Location: Glengorm Castle, Isle of Mull
Time: 1100 – 1300
Contact: ranger@glengormcastle.co.uk
Meet at the Glengorm Visitor Centre


Community rangers for the North Harris Trust, Isle of Rum and Isle of Tiree run regular whale watching sessions throughout the summer, including during NWDW. 
 

Siobhan Moran