Welcome to Day 7 of Orca Watch 2021
The last two days have brought more orca sightings from Shetland and today they’re back at Dunnet Head in Caithness! More on those sightings tomorrow! As always, check our Breaking News! sightings page here and the Verified Sightings page here for all the latest news as well as all our social media platforms.
Sightings Map – Thursday 3rd June
As you can see, after a quiet start to the day, orca appeared again in Shetland! Read more below. The day started though with a sighting of 2 harbour porpoises near Mossbank.
From mainland Scotland, near John O’Groats, Lesley Hawkins spotted 2 dolphins but was not able to confirm the species. Our local event co-ordinator Lucy Baldwin, who is also watching from the John O’Groats Ferry, spotted 7 grey seals near Dunnet Head and around 40 off Burwick in Orkney.
Scatness, Shetland, Thursday 3rd June
Orca were first seen south of Lady’s Holm on Scatness at around 9:40pm by Simon Allan. He watched them swim slowly away and they were later picked up by Karen Hall who confirmed 4 orca were in the group, including one bull.
Having travelled north west/west across to Gathness they disappeared from view at around 10:30pm. Given the late hour, it is remarkable that Karen was still able to take this photograph!
A look back – Citizen Science in Action
We reported yesterday about the orca sightings from Sumburgh Head on Shetland, on 2/6/21.
This picture was taken by Hannah Thompson during the first sighting of the day, beginning at 1:15pm. She reported 1 bull, 1 female, 2 calves and possibly one other orca in the group and by sharing them with Hugh Harrop and Karen Monroe, the animals were reported as being 169 Pod. The animal in the photograph is #170.
Hannah is on holiday from Yorkshire, visiting friends and family but knows the importance of reporting sightings. Citizen science in action!
They also serve!
Waiting at John O’Groats for the ferry on 02/06/21 are (l-r) Jo Taggert, Jackie Osborn, Zoe Doran, Sea Watch Regional Co-ordinator Clare Boardman and Pauline Robertson. Also part of the team but not in shot are Leonie Cole and Nigel Mansfield.
Clare has a great team, working hard to bring us all the latest news and recording all the sightings in the Sea Watch National Sightings Database.
An update from Orkney
Emma Neave-Webb, our Regional Co-ordinator and head of the Orkney Marine Mammal Research Initiative has updated me on the last few days and she has shared this great orca shot with us!
Her team has been searching far and wide with little success recently, not helped by plenty of haar and some choppy conditions. Sometimes, we agreed, it’s just like that!
FREE Sea Watcher App
Many of our observers and volunteers are using the new, FREE, Sea Watcher App.
Available from your app store for iOS or Android devices you can enter your sightings, conduct a timed watch, access videos and fact files for 35 cetacean species. You can even look back at what you and others have entered into the database.
Why wait? Download now and join our UK-wide team of citizen scientists.
Please support Orca Watch and Sea Watch Foundation with a donation to our PayPal Giving Fund here
Orca Watch Live! A look ahead
We’ve had some great shows already, which you can still see on the Sea Watch Foundation YouTube channel. Still to come though are:
Orca Watch Live! – Friday 4th June @ 7:30pm – more updates on the latest sightings from our volunteers and observers and a chance to meet and hear from some of our local partners. Click here.
Orca Watch Live Special! – Saturday 5th June @ 7:30pm – In this extended Special we learn about the Ecological Consequences of Orca Predation on Seals with Julia Sutherland, as well as catching up on all the latest sightings. Click here.
Orca Watch Live! Final Roundup – Sunday 6th June @ 7:30pm – Join us as we look back at the highlights of the week, consider what we have learned and look ahead to National Whale and Dolphin Watch, 24th July – 1st August 2021 and Orca Watch 2022! Click here.
If you missed our amazing Evening of Talks, you can still use the link you bought to see the recording. If you didn’t buy a ticket, it’s not too late! Click here!
This amazing show includes over 2 hours of orca “edutainment” including “Iconic Orca – Introducing the Killer Whale” with Robin Petch, our keynote speaker Filipa Samarra from the Icelandic Orca Project with “The orcas that unite us” and Director Peter Evans and Sightings Officer Chiara Bertulli talking about Sea Watch Foundation, its role in studying and protecting UK whales, dolphins and porpoises and how you can get involved as a volunteer “citizen scientist”. All this and more for only £6.50! Just click here!
Links to further information
Additional information can be found on our Orca Watch 2021 Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/orcawatchers or our Orca Watch Facebook Group www.facebook.com/groups/orcawatch/ as well as www.seawatchfoundation.org.uk/orca-watch-2021/.
For only £3.50/mth you can adopt a dolphin and know that you are directly supporting our ongoing work studying and protecting the bottlenose dolphins of Cardigan Bay.
In return you will receive an adoption certificate for your chosen dolphin and a monthly Newplash! newsletter and access to the Adopters Area at www.adoptadolphin.org.uk
Receive our quarterly 40+ page e-magazine Sea Watcher and a monthly Sightings Update and News Bulletin as well as access to the information in the private area of the My Sea Watch website.
Learn about the latest research and discover whale and dolphin watching hotspots in the UK and around the world. Learn more in the Skills Clinic and the Species Fact Files. Download a FREE trial issue of Sea Watcher, or join today at https://members.seawatchfoundation.org.uk
Thank you for supporting our work and this event
Thank you for being part of Orca Watch 2021. As I am sure you will appreciate, a great deal of work has gone into making this possible. Our paid Officers have been supported by an incredible team of volunteers and partners, as well as a very welcome financial contribution by NatureScot through the PlungeIn! The Coasts and Waters Community Fund. However, Orca Watch, and the work of Sea Watch Foundation studying and protecting UK whales, dolphins and porpoises year round, relies heavily on your support. Please show your appreciation by becoming a Sea Watch Member here, donating to our PayPal Giving Fund here, or why not Adopt a Dolphin here.
Thank you for your interest and support
Sea Watch Ambassador