Share your views on Scotland's first cetacean conservation strategy
Here’s the opportunity to share your opinions, with regard to the cetaceans in UK waters—by taking part in the public consultation on the first UK Dolphin and Porpoise Conservation Strategy.
Focusing on nine of the most commonly found dolphin, whale and porpoise species in UK waters, the strategy has been developed by the Scottish Government, in collaboration with the UK Government, the Welsh Government and the Northern Ireland Executive.
Its objective is to ensure the effective management to achieve and maintain the current favourable status of the nine species. It highlights certain pressures where further research or extra management measures may help to improve the conservation of marine mammals.
According to Scotland's Natural Environment Minister Ben Macpherson, “This consultation is a milestone for marine protection and includes a range of measures that will help us to conserve dolphin, whale and porpoise populations in our waters, and allow us to better understand and address the pressures they face.
He added that it built on “the work we are already doing to safeguard bottlenose dolphins, harbour porpoise, minke whales and Risso’s dolphins through our Marine Protected Area (MPA) network, which now covers in excess of 37 percent of our sea area.”
You can review and comment on the strategy from now till 14 June 2021 at https://consult.gov.scot/marine-conservation/uk-dolphin-and-porpoise-conservation-strategy/.
According to Sea Watch Foundation, based on the results from their Whale and Dolphin Count last year, the waters along the Scottish coastline continue to be a hot spot for cetaceans as well as other marine animals like sunfish and seals.
Numbers-wise, we're talking about sightings of nine cetacean and four non-cetacean species. Harbour porpoises were the most commonly seen species across the UK, with common dolphins and bottlenose dolphins coming in second and third respectively.
At the end of the nine-day event, which involved both scientists and volunteers, 9,784 individual dolphins, whales and porpoises were reported in 1,348 sightings across the UK.