We would like to welcome a new recruit to the Sea Watch team! Wildlife enthusiast, Ivor Clark, who has recently been appointed as Regional Coordinator for Newbiggin-by-the-Sea, NE England.
Hi my name is Ivor Clark and I have been studying the wild dolphin population off the Northumberland coast for the last 11 years. In the last 5 years we have had increasing sightings of dolphins, particularly the bottle nose variety. I set up an informal watch group based in Newbiggin by the sea in 2014, using Facebook as our communication platform to help monitor and record their activity. Our group membership has reached almost 1000. We now see dolphins in or around our bay just about every day. Our group hosts informal watches as well as participating in the annual National Survey. This year we will have our first exhibition and display about the dolphins in our local maritime centre.
Our group was officially endorsed by Sea Watch Foundation earlier this year. We are also supported by the Marine Conservation Society and liaise with several agencies about cetacean research , including Newcastle University, EDF, local fishermen and pelagic boat operators, town and county councils, wildlife trusts, schools and other marine organisations.
We are working towards making our Bay part of a marine conservation zone to help protect our marine mammals environment and feeding areas. At the end of the day though it’s just great to be able to enjoy watching our wild dolphins in their natural habitat and with their own agenda. Having them around has certainly captured the imagination of our local community and refocused efforts on protecting our marine life for future generations to enjoy.
I look forward to advancing our work by developing a collaborative role with Sea Watch Foundation as one of their regional coordinators.
If you are interested in getting involved in Sea Watch’s work and are based in NE England, do not hesitate to contact Sea Watch Sightings Officer, Chiara at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information!